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Leontyne Price Performs for Integrated Audience in Mississippi Hometown

Jan. 28, 1963 - Leontyne Price (pictured) sang before an applauding integrated audience in her Mississippi hometown last night to raise money for the small church in the choir of which she started her career. It was one of the rare times a nonsegregated event has been held in Laurel, a town of 27,000 people. The 34-year-old Negro soprano received two standing ovations, once after a section of spirituals, and returned for two encores. Miss Price, a sawmill worker’s daughter who became a star of the Metropolitan Opera Company, attracted a crowd from at least 10 states. They came from as far away as New York, Oklahoma, and Missouri. There were no incidents as the spectators, both white and Negro, sat where they pleased throughout the auditorium. Tickets were all general admission and Negroes and white persons sat side by side for as much as three hours before the concert began.


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