St. Cloud’s Connection to the Academy Awards ‘Best Picture’
ST. CLOUD -- There's a St. Cloud connection to this year's Academy Award winner for best picture. "Green Book" won the award at the Oscars Sunday night.
The movie is about African American pianist Don Shirley and his Italian American driver and bodyguard Tony Vallelonga.
Shirley performed at least twice at St. Cloud State University, including playing here with this trio in 1962, which is the year depicted in the film. A yearbook article in the SCSU archives says Shirley came back to Stewart Hall in March of 1966 to perform in conjunction with the annual Fine Arts Festival.
"Green Book" tells the story of a white man who becomes friends with the black musician he drives through the 1960s south for a concert tour. The name of the movie is from a publication that helped African Americans find businesses that would serve them in the segregated south.