Ira Frederick Aldridge, Famous Unknown Shakespearean

Painting of the actor Ira Aldridge, possibly in the role of Othello, Walters Art Museum, Othello, attributed to Irish artist William Mulready. Afro Newspaper/Gado / Getty Images

He was one of the first Americans to achieve fame as a Shakespearean actor — and the first black man to do so, becoming a famous figure on the Victorian stage. But Aldridge has largely been excluded from biographies of Shakespearean actors.

Topics in this Podcast: biographies, black history, theater, shakespeare, entertainment history, not just in the south