Black History: Special Delivery!!
Vinnette Carroll (1922-2002) achieved an accomplishment that no other African American female has matched to date. She is currently the only black woman to ever be nominated for a Tony Award for directing. She is also the first black woman to direct a Broadway play. Carroll was born in New York City but lived in Jamaica until the age of 10. Her parents placed a high value on education and her father’s desire was that she become a doctor. She decided to pursue the field of psychology; eventually working towards a Ph.D in psychology at Columbia University.
However, Carroll never completed her Ph.D. In 1946 she began studying drama and theater at New School of Social Research. Though she continued her studies in psychology; drama and theater became her primary focus. In 1972, she made history by directing the gospel revue, “Don’t Bother Me, I Can’t Cope” on Broadway. The production earned 4 Tony award nominations; including Carroll being nominated for Best Director For A Musical. In 1976 she earned another Tony Award nomination for Best Director for “Your Arms To Short To Box With God”. She retired in 1980 and operated a theater company in Fort Lauderdale, FL. Carroll never married or had children. She died in Florida in 2002 at age 80.