December 6th in African American History – Lillian Evans (Evanti)

December 6, 1967 Lillian Evans (Evanti), one of the first African American women to become an internationally prominent opera performer, died.

Evans was born August 12, 1891 in Washington, D.C. A gifted student and performer, she could speak and sing in five different languages and earned her bachelor’s degree in music from Howard University.

Evans, a lyric soprano, began singing professionally in 1918 under the stage name Evanti. She moved to France in 1925 where she became the first African American woman to sing with a European opera company. In 1934, she gave a special command performance for President Franklin D. Roosevelt. In 1941, she and Mary Caldwell Dawson created the National Negro Opera Company to provide a venue for African American performers. Over her career, Evanti performed in 24 operas.

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

To prove you're a person (not a spam script), type the security word shown in the picture. Click on the picture to hear an audio file of the word.
Anti-spam image