Anderson, Marian

A twentieth-century African-American contralto, known for her roles in opera and also for her performances of spirituals (see also spirituals).

Notes for Anderson, Marian

In 1941, a planned concert by Anderson at Constitution Hall was blocked by the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR), who owned the hall, because she was black. With the support of the president, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and his wife, Eleanor, Anderson gave a free concert on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, which was attended by more than 75,000 people.

Notes for Anderson, Marian

Anderson was the first black person to sing with the Metropolitan Opera of New York City.

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The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.