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 Winifred Atwell

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Winifred Atwell

  • Birth 27 Apr 1914 Tunapuna, Tunapuna-Piarco, Trinidad And Tobago
  • Death 28 Feb 1983 Sydney, City of Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
  • Burial South Gundurimba, Lismore City, New South Wales, Australia
  • Memorial ID 23013

Jazz Musician. She trained locally as a classical pianist and worked in her father's pharmacy before deciding to move tp England in 1946 so she could train at London’s Royal Academy of Music. Finding work was difficult, so she began spending her nights playing jazz in local clubs. Her fame as a ragtime pianist grew and in 1951 she signed a recording contract with DECCA records. Her music exploded as she became the first black million -selling recording artist in Britain. She was in great demand for both personal and television appearances. One of her most popular stage routines was to begin playing classical music on a grand piano before moving over to an old battered upright piano and performing some of her hits such as “Black and White Rag” or “Poor People of Paris.” She was known as the “Queen of the Ivories.” In the late 1950s, the rise of rock and roll began to take a toll on her career. She moved to Australia, where she once again focused on playing classical music. There her career was revived as she became popular touring with various symphony orchestras.

Bio by: Bigwoo





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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Added: 13 Jul 2001
  • Find A Grave Memorial 23013
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Winifred Atwell (27 Apr 1914–28 Feb 1983), Find A Grave Memorial no. 23013, citing Northern Rivers Memorial Park, South Gundurimba, Lismore City, New South Wales, Australia ; Maintained by Find A Grave .