Key events in the life of pioneering contralto Marian Anderson

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FILE - Singer Marian Anderson appears at the Ladies' Home Journal's "Women of the Decade Awards in New York on Nov. 28, 1979. The pioneering Black contralto's name will now replace Verizon's on the Philadelphia Orchestra hall, a key cultural institution in the city she was born in in 1897. (AP Photo/Ron Frehm, File)

PHILADELPHIA – Key events in the life of pioneering contralto Marian Anderson, whose name replaced Verizon on the Philadelphia Orchestra on Wednesday:

Feb. 27, 1897 — Born in Philadelphia.

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Early 1900s — By age of 6, Anderson gained attention for her voice in the African American Union Baptist Church choir in Philadelphia. She also performed with the People’s Chorus, a Black ensemble in Philadelphia. Churchgoers held a fundraiser enabling her to study with Giuseppe Boghetti.

April 22, 1918 — First appearance at the Philadelphia Academy of Music with the New York Clef Club Syncopated Orchestra.

Summer 1919 — Enrolled in six-week opera course at the Chicago Conservatory of Music.

Dec. 30, 1920 — First appearance at New York's Carnegie Hall with the Martin-Smith Music School.

Early 1920s — Denied admission to the Philadelphia Musical Academy (now named the University of the Arts School of Music) because she was Black.

1920s and 1930s — Performed regularly in Europe.

1924 — Signed with RCA Victor, the first Black American to get a recording contract.

Aug. 26, 1925 — Entered into a New York Philharmonic vocal competition by famed voice teacher Giuseppe Boghetti, Anderson made her debut with the orchestra at Lewisohn Stadium with conductor Willem van Hoogstraten, the first Black solo artist to appear with the orchestra.

Dec. 30, 1928 — Made her Carnegie Hall solo recital debut.

Feb. 19, 1936 — First White House performance

April 16, 1937 — Denied a room at the Nassau Inn following a performance at the McCarter Theatre Center in Princeton, New Jersey, Anderson was invited to spend the night in the home of Albert Einstein.

April 9, 1939 — Denied a performance at Constitution Hall in Washington, D.C., by the Daughters of the American Revolution because of her race, which prompted first lady Eleanor Roosevelt to resign from DAR. Instead, Anderson performed at the Lincoln Memorial on Easter Sunday before a crowd estimated at 75,000, preserved in the documentary film “Marian Anderson: The Lincoln Memorial Concert." The concert was organized in response to the DAR decision by promoter Sol Hurok, NAACP Secretary Walter White and Interior Secretary Harold Ickes.

Jan. 7, 1943 — First performance at Constitution Hall, a benefit for United China Relief before an integrated audience.

Jan. 7, 1955 — Made her Metropolitan Opera debut at age 57 at Ulrica in Giuseppe Verdii's “Un Ballo in Maschera (A Masked Ball)” with Zinka Milanov, Richard Tucker, Leonard Warren and Roberta Peters, with Dimitri Mitropoulos conducting.

Dec. 6, 1963 — Awarded Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Lyndon B. Johnson.

March 8, 1977 — Awarded Congressional Gold Medal, presented by President Jimmy Carter on Oct. 16, 1978.

Dec. 3, 1978 — Among the recipients in the first year of the Kennedy Center Honors.

Jan. 10, 1991 — Announced as winner of a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award.

April 8, 1993 — Following a stroke the previous month, died at age 96 in Portland, Oregon, at the home of her nephew, conductor James DePriest.

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