Alicia Keys: Lena Horne ‘Broke Down Many Barriers’

On Monday (May 10), R&B singers Kelly Rowland and Ciara reminisced about jazz great Lena Horne, who died on Sunday at age 92. Now, Alicia Keys, who’s currently in Europe, is acknowledging that her own career wouldn’t be possible had it not been for Horne. 

“Lena’s a powerful force of our history and legacy. She showed courage and tenacity during a tumultuous time reminding us all that our journey on earth is meant to make an impact,” Keys told VIBE in a statement. “Her journey surely did and she broke down many barriers in the process. Lena the woman, the human being that is the most fascinating to me: her vulnerabilities, her life, her flow through the many difficult times (and good ones) and her ability to remain graceful, elegant and beautiful always. What a special, phenomenal woman. I will miss her.”

When the news hit, many people took to Twitter to send condolences. Keys posted the following Twitter message on Monday in remembrance of Horne: “Wow! Lena Horne! What an incredible woman & story of triumph! May we all kno tht life is a journey of possibility as long as we hang on…” 

A Lena Horne biopic has reportedly been in the works for years, with Oprah Winfrey producing. Keys was rumored to star as the classic entertainer as a replacement for Janet Jackson. —Starrene Rhett

PHOTOS: A Legend Lost: Lena Horne