Anderson, Marian (1897 – 1993)
African – American operatic contralto. Vintage autograph album leaf. Bold fountain pen signature on a pale green sheet. Comes with a 4″x6″ black and white glossy photo print of the operatic great (from an original photographic image by Yousef Karsh). Professionally matted in a rich, green suede board and further protected with a Myalr cover. Wonderful ensemble for display. Of Marian Anderson, the music critic Alan Blyth observed: “Her voice was a rich, vibrant contralto of instrinsic beauty.” Most of her singing career was spent performing in concert and recital in major music venues and with major orchestras through the US and Europe between 1925 – 65. She became an important figure in the struggle for black artists to overcome racial prejudice in the US during the mid twentieth century. In 1939, the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) refused permission for Anderson to sing to an integrated audience in Constitution Hall. Their race – driven refusal placed Anderson into the spotlight of the international community on a level usually only found by high profile celebrities and politicians. With the aid of President Franklin D. Roosevelt and First Lady Eleanor, Anderson performed a critically – acclaimed open – air concert on Easter Sunday, April 9, 1939, on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial to a crowd of more than 75,000 and a radio audience in the millions.