Queen Latifah to be honored with Marian Anderson Award

By Associated Press |

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Queen Latifah at A Conversation with a Queen presented by the 2008 Urbanworld Film Festival and BET Networks at The Directors Guild of America in NYC on September 13, 2008

Queen Latifah at A Conversation with a Queen presented by the 2008 Urbanworld Film Festival and BET Networks at The Directors Guild of America in NYC on September 13, 2008

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Queen Latifah will be honored with an award named for a pioneering opera singer. The Marian Anderson Award is given in Philadelphia to “critically acclaimed artists who have impacted society in a positive way.” Anderson was the first black singer to perform at the Metropolitan Opera.

Mayor Jim Kenney announced Tuesday that the rapper, singer and actress would be the latest recipient. Born Dana Owens in Newark, New Jersey, Queen Latifah was nominated for an Oscar for her role as Matron “Mama” Morton in 2002’s “Chicago,” and Grammy for her song “U.N.I.T.Y.” Kenney says she’s “an excellent role model and clearly well-deserving of this prestigious honor.”

Previous winners include Dionne Warwick, Patti LaBelle and music producers Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff. It will be awarded at a Nov. 20 gala.