Camilla Williams Opera singer

Camilla williams

Camilla Ella Williams (October 18, 1919 – January 29, 2012) was an American operatic soprano who performed nationally and internationally. After studying with renowned teachers in New York City, she was the first African American to receive a regular contract with a major American opera company, the New York City Opera. She had earlier won honors in vocal competitions and the Marian Anderson Fellowship in 1943-1944. In 1954 she became the first African American to sing a major role with the Vienna State Opera. She later also performed as a soloist with numerous European orchestras. As a concert artist, she toured throughout the United States as well as Asia, Australia and New Zealand. In 1977, she was the first African American appointed as Professor of Voice at Indiana University, and she taught there until 1997. On October 18, 1919, Camilla Ella Williams was born in Danville, Virginia, to Fannie Carey Williams and Cornelius Booker Williams, who worked as a chauffeur. She was the youngest of four children (Mary, Helen, and Cornelius). My grandparents and parents were self-taught musicians; all of them sang, and there was always music in our home.

Personal details

Date of birth
October 18th, 1919
Place of birth
United States of America
Date of death
January 29th, 2012 at age of 92
African American


1. Virginia State University Colleges/University

Virginia State University is a historically black and land-grant university located north of the Appomattox River in Ettrick, Chesterfield County, in the Richmond area. Founded on March 6, 1882 (1882-03-06), Virginia State was the United States's first fully state-supported four-year institution of higher learning for black Americans. The university is a member-school of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund.

Type Public university
2010. 22.6 mil. $
Institution colors
March 6th, 1882
1 Hayden Drive, 23806 - Petersburg, Virginia
2010. 5,075
2009. 4,872
2010. 559
Acceptance rate
2010. 58.0 %
Local tuition
2011. 7.09 K $
2010. 6.57 K $
2009. 6.17 K $
2008. 5.9 K $
Official web page
Wikipedia article

Institution social analysis

Notable alumni by career
Notable alumni by gender

People attended Virginia State University connected by profession and/or age

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Music albums

Album title Release date Release type Recording type Recording length Additional artists Contributors
Gershwin: Porgy and Bess (opera)
1951 Album
Porgy and Bess
1950 Album 48 minutes

Awards won

1975 Grammy Hall of Fame Award

Awarded for Presented by Discipline Award shared with
Gershwin: Porgy and Bess (opera) Musical Album


Check Camilla Williams on wikipedia.

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