Appreciation Movies Music

Remembering the inspirational singer and actor Irene Cara

From Irene Cara's official Facebook page.

LONDON – Irene Cara, a trailblazing American singer, songwriter and actress known for her title tracks in the films Fame and Flashdance died last week in her Florida home. She was 63.

The 1980 hit film Fame catapulted Cara to stardom. Cara portrayed an Afro-Latina performing arts student while exposing the realities of the industry in the film. 

Her acting role encouraged a generation to pursue their dreams, no matter what. 

By no surprise, Cara won the Trailblazer Award by the Reel Sisters of the Diaspora Film Festival in 2007. 

Cara’s ability to speak to your soul through her music is evident in her title track in the film “Flashdance… What a Feeling.’’ Cara won an Academy Award and a Grammy Award in 1984 for her song. 

Cara had a defining influence on the 1980s with her powerful voice she used to not only sing but to also demand justice for others. 

In her song “Keep On” she sings a political message. 

“How many politicians try to cover up their lies… abuse us with their might,’” Cara sang. “It is the sadness of it all that makes us stand and fight.”

Cara’s commitment to justice is proven by the actions she made in her life. 

In 1985, Cara filed a $10 million suit against a record company executive, claiming he exploited her trust and withholding royalties, according to her obituary in The New York Times.

Cara was a Black artist who knew the worth of her art in 1980s America and demanded a fair wage for it. 

“She was a beautifully gifted soul whose legacy will live forever through her music and film,” her family said in a statement shared by her publicist on Twitter.

This sentiment couldn’t be more true as Cara left behind a legacy of phenomenal music and inspired many with her acting roles.

Through this, we will remember Irene Cara’s name and she truly will live forever. 

Anjola Fashawe is a Reporter with Youth Journalism International.

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