American Masters

How racism affected Marian Anderson's vocal classification

Clip: 02/08/2022 | 1m 24s  | Video has closed captioning.

Marian Anderson was billed as a contralto, the lowest possible female voice, even though she could also sing the high notes of a soprano. "I believed that Marian Anderson was not classified as a soprano is because that would mean that she would be the love interest of a white counterpart, which was not accepted at all at the time," said opera singer Denyce Graves.

Aired: 02/08/22

Rating: NR

Problems Playing Video? | Closed Captioning

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