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ALBC Signature Event - Lincoln Memorial Rededication Series Part II




Event Type:

ALBC Event


Lincoln Memorial




Dist of Columbia

Event Info:

Marian Anderson Tribute Concert

In 1939, on Easter Sunday, contralto Marian Anderson performed on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial after the Daughters of the American Revolution barred her from singing at Constitution Hall due to the color of her skin.

On April 12, 2009, seventy years after Anderson set the stage for the modern civil rights era, acclaimed mezzo-soprano Denyce Graves performs at the Lincoln Memorial in a joyous Easter Sunday Concert paying tribute to Marian Anderson's performance. 

Graves will be joined by the internationally renowned a capella ensemble Sweet Honey in the Rock.  Recently nominated for a Grammy award in 2008, Sweet Honey has come in song to communities across the U.S., and around the world raising her voice in hope, love, justice, peace, and resistance.

Also enhancing the celebration will be the world famous Chicago Children’s Choir, founded in 1956 at the First Unitarian Church in Chicago, by the late Rev. Christopher Moore.  Moore’s dream was that young people from diverse backgrounds could better understand each other, as well as learn about themselves, by learning to make beautiful music together.

Marian Anderson, who was born in 1897, was described as having “a voice heard once in a hundred years.” Yet in 1939, she was denied the right to perform in Washington, DC’s Constitution Hall due to the color of her skin.  Through the efforts of Anderson, the NAACP, First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt, and Interior Secretary Harold Ickes, arrangements were made to hold the concert on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial.

The Marian Anderson Tribute is sponsored by the McCormick Foundation.  It begins on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial at 3:00 PM.

The event also features a naturalization ceremony for over 200 new Americans. Former Secretary of State Colin Powell delivers the key-note address.

The concert is free and open to all.  For additional details, click here.


Media inquiries contact:

David Early