Photo by Lyle Ashton Harris

VINIE BURROWS (1924 – 2023), born in Harlem Hospital, is therefore a native New Yorker. A child actor on radio, she made her Broadway debut with Helen Hayes. Six more Broadway shows followed, appearing with Mary Martin, Claude Rains, Ossie Davis, and Eartha Kitt, Don Hopper, Ben Gazzara, David Wayne, among others. Frustrated by the roles available to the actor of color, VINIE created and produced her first one woman show, WALK TOGETHER CHILDREN, a chronicle of the African American experience. Morning TV talk shows introduced her to the college market. 6000 performances later with a repertoire of 8 solo shows, she toured three continents. She has been hailed as a “cultural ambassador” and honored at the United Nations. Actors’ Equity Association gave her their Paul Robeson Award; MIT their McDermott Award for her contribution to the Arts. A mother, grandmother and great grandmother, Vinie calls herself, a “cultural worker.”

Read tributes to Burrows in Playbill.com, The New York Times and The New Yorker

“One of the reigning divas of the Black theatre… As an actress, Miss Burrows has the priceless gift of honesty. With nothing but a few lights and bare stage, she sings and acts without any shadow of deceptions or veils of deceit… She is a magnificent performer.” (Clive Barnes, New York Times)


“…An actress of range and commanding passion.” (Stephen Holden, New York Times)


“Fierce, passionate, brilliant” (Edith Oliver, The New Yorker)