Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Zenzile Miriam Makeba

Miriam Makeba, 1990.

Media Statement

Issued by: ZM Makeba Trust and Siyandisa Music

10th November 2008

The world was dealt a blow early this morning, in a small town outside Naples, Italy when Zenzile Miriam Makeba..Mama Afrika to the world, passed away.. and left this earth, aged 76 years. She was born on 4th March 1932.

Whilst this great lady was alive she would say “I will sing until the last day of my life”

Zenzile Miriam Makeba collapsed on stage, at the end of her set, after singing Pata Pata,. She was immediately attended to by her grandson Nelson Lumumba Lee and others before being rushed to the nearest hospital. Tragically, in the early hours of this 10th of November 2008 morning, the doctors pronounced that they were unable to revive her.

Ambassador Makeba, was with her band, and was performing before an outdoor audience, in the open air at Via Verde, in the small town of Castelvolturno, not far from Naples. The audience included her long time friend, Italian promoter, Roberto Meglioli, who she had called on Friday from Holland, and asked to attend her show. He was on stage with her at the end of the show, and there she collapsed into his arms.

Dr Miriam Makeba never forgot her struggle through her life, and never stopped identifying with those who were downtrodden and who suffered. An activist to the end, the event where she was performing at, was an Anti-Racism and Anti-Mafia Event. “Mazi” as she was affectionately known by those who knew her well, never shied from speaking her mind and standing for her beliefs. She was an outstanding South African, a and indeed a gracious and true citizen of the World.

Zenzile Miriam Makeba is survived by her grandchildren Nelson Lumumba Lee and Zenzi Monique Lee, and her great- grandchildren Lindelani, Ayanda and Kwame. [http://www.miriammakeba.co.za/]

Biography (Wikipedia)

Miriam Zenzi Makeba was born in Johannesburg in 1932. Her mother was a Swazi sangoma and her father, who died when she was six, was a Xhosa. As a child, she sang at the Kilmerton Training Institute in Pretoria, which she attended for eight years.

Makeba first toured with an amateur group. Her professional career began in the 1950s with the Manhattan Brothers, before she formed her own group, The Skylarks, singing a blend of jazz and traditional melodies of South Africa.

In 1959, she performed in the musical King Kong alongside Hugh Masekela, her future husband. Though she was a successful recording artist, she was only receiving a few dollars for each recording session and no provisional royalties, and was keen to go to the US. Her break came when she starred in the anti-apartheid documentary Come Back, Africa in 1959 by independant filmmaker Lionel Rogosin. She attended the premiere of the film at the Venice Film Festival.

Makeba then travelled to London where she met Harry Belafonte, who assisted her in gaining entry to and fame in the United States. She released many of her most famous hits there including "Pata Pata", "The Click Song" ("Qongqothwane" in Xhosa), and "Malaika". In 1966, Makeba received the Grammy Award for Best Folk Recording together with Harry Belafonte for An Evening With Belafonte/Makeba. The album dealt with the political plight of black South Africans under apartheid.

She discovered that her South African passport was revoked when she tried to return there in 1960 for her mother's funeral. In 1963, after testifying against apartheid before the United Nations, her South African citizenship and her right to return to the country were revoked. She has had nine passports, [4] and was granted honorary citizenship of ten countries.[5]

Her marriage to Trinidadian civil rights activist and Black Panthers leader Stokely Carmichael in 1968 caused controversy in the United States, and her record deals and tours were cancelled. As a result of this, the couple moved to Guinea, where they became close with President Ahmed Sékou Touré and his wife. Makeba separated from Carmichael in 1973, and continued to perform primarily in Africa, South America and Europe. She was one of the African and Afro-American entertainers at the 1974 Rumble in the Jungle match between Muhammad Ali and George Foreman held in Zaïre. Makeba also served as a Guinean delegate to the United Nations, for which she won the Dag Hammarskjöld Peace Prize in 1986.

After the death of her only daughter Bongi Makeba in 1985, she moved to Brussels. In 1987, she appeared in Paul Simon's Graceland tour. Shortly thereafter she published her autobiography Makeba: My Story (ISBN 0-453-00561-6).

Nelson Mandela persuaded her to return to South Africa in 1990. In the fall of 1991, she made a guest appearance in an episode of The Cosby Show, entitled "Olivia Comes Out Of The Closet". In 1992 she starred in the film Sarafina!, about the 1976 Soweto youth uprisings, as the title character's mother, "Angelina." She also took part in the 2002 documentary Amandla!: A Revolution in Four-Part Harmony where she and others recalled the days of apartheid.

In January 2000, her album, Homeland, produced by Cedric Samson and Michael Levinsohn[6] was nominated for a Grammy Award in the "Best World Music" category[7]. In 2001 she was awarded the Gold Otto Hahn Peace Medal by the United Nations Association of Germany (DGVN) in Berlin, "for outstanding services to peace and international understanding". In 2002, she shared the Polar Music Prize with Sofia Gubaidulina. In 2004, Makeba was voted 38th in the Top 100 Great South Africans. Makeba started a worldwide farewell tour in 2005, holding concerts in all of those countries that she had visited during her working life. [5]

Her publicist notes that Makeba had suffered "severe arthritis" for some time.[8]

On 9 November 2008, she became ill while taking part in a concert organized to support writer Roberto Saviano in his stand against the Camorra, a mafia-like organisation. The concert was being held in Castel Volturno, near Caserta, Italy. Makeba suffered an heart attack after singing her hit song "Pata Pata"[2], and was taken to the "Pineta Grande" hospital where it was impossible to revive her.[3][1][9][2] In his condolence message, former South African president Nelson Mandela said it was “fitting that her last moments were spent on a stage, enriching the hearts and lives of others - and again in support of a good cause.”[10]

Discography (Wikipedia)



  • The Queen Of African Music - 17 Great Songs, 1987
  • Africa 1960-65 recordings, 1991
  • Eyes On Tomorrow, 1991
  • The Best Of Miriam Makeba & The Skylarks: 1956 - 1959 recordings, 1998
  • Mama Africa: The Very Best Of Miriam Makeba, 2000
  • The Guinea Years, 2001
  • The Definitive Collection, 2002
  • The Best Of The Early Years, 2003

Pautan:Majalah.Dompas.net, Dompas Network, Guided-Info.com, UsahawanInternet.com, dan Artikel Sentral. Dia juga mengelola beberapa blog: Catatan Sekilas, Perkahwinan, Tokoh, Usahawan Maya, Cyber Ilmu, Riau, Banners to click!, My Biz Online, i-chargezeromax.com, manggis.info,

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Keluarbiasaan Helen Keller

HELEN ADAMS adalah orang buta pertama yang berjaya menamatkan pengajian di kolej.

Helen sentiasa diingati dalam sejarah sebagai seorang wanita yang luar biasa kerana mampu meraih kejayaan seperti manusia normal.

DI sebuah pekan kecil di selatan Tuscumbia, Alabama, salah satu 'keajaiban dunia' telah berlaku di sana. Ia bermula pada satu hari yang cerah dalam musim bunga pada tahun 1887.

Gumpalan awan putih indah menghiasi langit yang kebiruan dan kelihatan burung-burung berterbangan sambil hinggap di pokok-pokok oak dan mapel.

Bunga-bunga pelbagai warna pula berguguran ke tanah sekali gus menghiasi kawasan sekitarnya. Namun kesemua itu tidak dapat dilihat dan didengari oleh seorang gadis manis yang berusia tujuh tahun.

Berdiri di sebelah gadis bernama Helen Adams Keller yang buta dan pekak sepenuhnya itu, adalah seorang wanita muda, Anne Mansfield Sullivan.

Sullivan kemudian mengambil air sejuk dan diletakkan ke dalam salah satu tangan gadis tersebut sambil berulang-ulang menyebut kod abjad mengandungi lima huruf secara perlahan-lahan.

Keadaan itu berterusan di mana Helen dengan cermat dan teliti berusaha untuk memecahkan dunianya yang penuh kesunyian.

Tiba-tiba, satu isyarat melintas di dalam kepala Helen yang menyedari bahawa ia membawa satu makna. Dia kemudian mengetahui bahawa ejaan 'w-a-t-e-r' yang disebut oleh Sullivan ialah sesuatu yang sejuk yang mengalir di tangannya.

'Kegelapan' mula cair di fikirannya seperti ais pada bulan Mac yang penuh cerah itu. Menjelang senja, Helen telah pun mempelajari 30 perkataan.

Sejak itu bermulalah dunia baru Helen yang mahu membuktikan keupayaan dirinya meskipun dia buta dan cacat.

Bagi sesiapa yang tidak mengenali Helen, dia merupakan seorang penulis, aktivis dan pensyarah yang terkenal di Amerika Syarikat (AS). Helen juga adalah orang buta pertama yang berjaya menamatkan pengajian di kolej.

Dia sentiasa diingati dalam sejarah sebagai seorang wanita buta dan pekak yang luar biasa kerana mampu meraih kejayaan seperti manusia normal.

Helen kemudian telah mendedikasikan seluruh kehidupannya untuk memperbaiki keadaan orang buta dan pekak di seluruh dunia dengan menyampaikan syarahan berbentuk motivasi.

Di mana sahaja dia muncul, Helen berjaya membawa keberanian dan semangat baru kepada jutaan orang buta di seluruh dunia.

Gurunya, Sullivan pula dikenang sebagai Miracle Worker kerana semangatnya dan usahanya.

Menyelusuri lembaran kehidupan wanita ikonik ini, Helen dilahirkan sebagai seorang kanak-kanak yang comel dan sihat pada tanggal 27 Jun 1880 di sebuah pekan kecil di Tuscumbia, Alabama.

Helen merupakan anak kepada Kapten Arthur H. Keller, bekas pegawai Confederate Army dan pasangannya, Kate Adams Keller, sepupu kepada Robert E. Lee dan anak perempuan Charles W. Adams, bekas jeneral Confederate.

Bagaimanapun, derita Helen bermula ketika dia berusia 19 bulan selepas diserang pelbagai penyakit sehingga menyebabkan bayi comel tersebut buta dan pekak sepenuhnya.

Pada usia enam tahun, Helen dibawa berjumpa Dr. Alexander Graham Bell oleh kedua ibu bapanya. Disebabkan lawatan itu, Helen kemudian bertemu dengan Sullivan pada 3 Mac 1887.

Sullivan sejak itu mula mendampingi Helen setelah menyedari gadis kecil tersebut mempunyai keistimewaan tersendiri.

Bertindak sebagai guru kepada Helen, Sullivan ternyata berjaya dalam tugasannya.

Menjelang bulan Ogos, iaitu dalam masa enam bulan, Helen telah dapat mempelajari dan mengetahui 625 perkataan.

FOTO kenangan Sullivan (kanan) sewaktu mengajar Helen ketika usianya 8 tahun.

Pada tahun 1888 Helen menghadiri kelas Royal Institue For the Blind. Enam tahun kemudian, Helen dan Sullivan berhijrah ke New York bagi meneruskan persekolahan di Wright-Humason School for the Deaf dan Horace Mann School for the Deaf.

Pada tahun 1896 pula, mereka kembali ke Massachusetts dan Helen memasuki The Cambridge School for Young Ladies sebelum diterima melanjutkan pengajian di Radcliffe College pada tahun 1900.

Pada usia 24 tahun, Helen berjaya menamatkan pengajiannya dari Radcliffe College pada 1904 sekali gus menjadi orang buta dan pekak pertama meraih ijazah dalam jurusan Bachelor of Arts.

Selepas menamatkan pengajiannya, Helen mula menjadi penceramah dan mengembara di seluruh dunia bersama Sullivan bagi memberi syarahan dan membantu golongan pekak serta buta keluar daripada kepompong permasalahan mereka.

Selain itu, Helen turut menjadi penulis dan menerbitkan sebuah buku autobiografi bertajuk The Story of My Life.

Secara keseluruhan, Helen telah menulis 12 buah buku sepanjang hayatnya. Antaranya bertajuk The World I Live In (1908), Out of the Dark (1913), My Religion (1927) dan Light in My Darkness.

Mengukuhkan lagi kedudukannya sebagai wanita berjaya, Helen menubuhkan Helen Keller International, sebuah pertubuhan untuk melindungi golongan buta pada tahun 1915.

Sementara pada tahun 1920, dia membantu menubuhkan American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU).

Bagaimanapun pada tahun 1961, Helen mengalami beberapa siri serangan strok dan ini menyebabkan dia terpaksa menghabiskan masa di rumahnya untuk berehat dan menerima rawatan.

Sebagai menghargai jasa-jasanya, pada 14 September 1964 Presiden Lyndon B. Johnson telah menganugerahkan Helen, pingat Presidential Medal of Freedom, salah satu pengiktirafan tertinggi AS terhadap orang awam.

Pada 1965 pula, Helen dipilih sebagai Women's Hall of Fame di New York World's Fair. Helen telah mengabdikan seluruh kehidupannya untuk mencari dana bagi American Foundation for The Blind.

Setelah mengharungi kehidupan di dunia dengan penuh sabar dan tabah, Helen akhirnya meninggal dunia sewaktu dalam tidur pada 1 Jun 1968 di Arcan Ridge berhampiran Westport, Connecticut.

Helen dikebumikan di National Cathedral di Washington bersebelahan makam guru dan teman sejatinya, Sullivan. - Agensi

Sumber: Kosmo! untuk tujuan dokumentasi. Tokoh dikelola oleh Syafrein Effendiuz yang juga editor Majalah.Dompas.net, Dompas Network, ArticleCentral dan Artikel Sentral. Dia juga mengelola beberapa blog: Catatan Sekilas, Perkahwinan, Akhbar & Majalah, Usahawan Maya, Cyber Ilmu, Riau, Banners to click!, My Biz Online, dan lain-lain.