Voice of Freedom

“I forgave the DAR years ago. You lose a lot of time hating people.”  Marian Anderson

Marian Anderson was a remarkable woman of many achievements in her lifetime.  Her voice was so amazing that as a child her neighbors raised money for her to study formally with a famous voice teacher. The great Arturo Toscanini said to her, “A voice like yours only comes along every one hundred  years.”

The refusal of the DAR (Daughters of the American Revolution) to let her perform at Constitution Hall in 1939 thrust her into the international spotlight. Eleanor Roosevelt was outraged and arranged for Ms. Anderson to perform on Easter Sunday 1939 on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington D.C.  Ms. Anderson enthralled an estimated crowd of 75,000 people and millions more who listened via radio.  President and Mrs. Roosevelt also invited her to sing at the White House, the first Black performer to do so.   She became a force in the movement to break down racial barriers faced by all artists of color.  


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