Sing for your Life

Sing for your Life

A Story of Race, Music, and Family

Large Print - 2016 | Large print edition
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Ryan Speedo Green had a tough upbringing in southeastern Virginia: his family lived in a trailer park and later a bullet-riddled house across the street from drug dealers. His father was absent, his mother volatile. At the age of twelve, Ryan was sent to Virginia's juvenile facility of last resort. He was placed in solitary confinement. He was uncontrollable, uncontainable, with little hope for the future. In 2011, at the age of twenty-four, Ryan won a nationwide competition hosted by New York's Metropolitan Opera, beating out 1,200 other talented singers. Today he is a rising star, performing major roles at the Met and Europe's most prestigious opera houses.
Publisher: Waterville, Maine : Thorndike Press, [2016]
Edition: Large print edition
Copyright Date: ©2016
ISBN: 9781410494498
Branch Call Number: 782.1092 GRE 2016
Characteristics: 411 pages (large print) ; 23 cm
large print


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Aug 20, 2018

A very compelling story about a young man who excels in a challenging musical discipline despite poverty and many hardships growing up. Along the way he was helped by a small handful of adults who saw promise in him. His tenacity is simply amazing. The author conveys both Ryan Green's grace and determination as well as the complexity of the problems faced by Mr. Green and children and families in similar circumstances. A multi-layered story that gives hope but makes one despair for those who fall through the cracks.

Oct 04, 2016

He had never killed anyone, but if his life continued to deteriorate, it wasn't out of the question. He was just 12. He was incarcerated, some of it in solitary confinement, for threatening his mother with a knife. Today, 18 years later, in an art form traditionally the province of white Europeans and Americans, this 6'5" black man is winning rave reviews for his Colline in the Met's La Boheme. Before that, he wowed the crowds and the critics in Vienna. This book, authored by a contributor to the NY Times, chronicles his difficult (an understatement) youth, his decision to avoid where he was heading, including stories about the people who helped him along the way, and the sheer hard work it took to make him a budding world class opera singer, particularly since he hadn't even known he had any talent for singing until high school. It's a riveting and thought-provoking book, well worth reading.

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