Born Nov. 1923 in Key West, long-time Miamian, Ruth Wolkowsky Greenfield is an American concert pianist, composer and teacher who, through music, broke racial barriers and brought together black and white students, taught by black and white teachers. She moved to Paris in 1949 to study piano and there experienced a society far more racially integrated than Miami, which was in the throes of profound racial segregation ... in schools, beaches, parks, restaurants. When she returned to Miami, Ruth founded the Fine Arts Conservatory in 1951 in Miami, one of the first fully integrated schools for music, art and dance in the South. This pioneering color-blind approach was considered scandalous at the time, but provided a breath of fresh air in a toxic society. Greenfield continued to teach music for 32 years at what is today Miami Dade College, Florida's first integrated college. Concerned w urban blight in Downtown Miami in the late 70s early 80s, Ruth founded the Lunchtime Lively Arts Series that brought music and culture to downtown Miami. She has devoted her life to using music to build bridges, bringing music to performers of all races, ages and genders. Watch the documentary about Ruth - "instruments of Change."
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