The Marion Anderson Award is given in Philadelphia to ” critically acclaimed artist who have impacted society in a positive way.” Anderson was the first black singer to perform at the Metropolitan Opera. Latifah is the first female rapper to receive this award. The Marion Anderson Award has been given to singers Dionne Warwick and Patti Labelle. Also,music producers Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff were recipients in years past. Mayor of Philadelphia, Jim Kenney has this to say about Queen Latifah
“She is an excellent role model and clearly well – deserving of this prestigious honor.”
Latifah was one of the first feminist in Hip Hop
Latifah was born Dana Owens, and, at eight, was given the Arabic nickname Latifah, meaning “delicate and sensitive”. She was actually a streetwise New Jersey-reared chick. She enjoyed her first taste of the spotlight as a teenage “human beatbox” with an all-girl rap group. Latifah’s rap style was a bit of jazz, reggae, and soul. Her debut single Wrath of My Madness was released in 1998.
She followed up in 1998 with her hit song All Hail The Queen. Latifah’s next album spawned the hit single U.N.I.T.Y. and it won a Grammy Award. Her song also was successful on the Billboard Hot 100 charts. Latifah is often considered hip hop’s first lady, according to Biography website.
Latifah is the CEO of Flava Unit Entertainment
Latifah is the CEO and owner of Flava Unit Entertainment. She is in partnership with her long time friend, Shakim Compere. The two started the entertainment company shortly after her rap career success. In recent years, Flava Unit Entertainment struck a deal with Netflix in 2013 to stream movies from Flava Unit collection after they are released in theaters. Flava Unit was behind the Terrence Howard thriller House of Bodies and the crime title Percentage. Latifah was excited about the deal with Netflix.
“Shakim and I are thrilled to do business with Netflix, ” Latifah said in a statement to the Hollywood Reporter. ” Netflix is such a strong brand and the perfect place to showcase our projects.”
Latifah is the supreme entertainer
Latifah is not only a rapper but she sings, acts and is a business mogul. Latifah starred in the hit Sitcom Living Single from 1993-1998. Also, Latifah starred in the movie Set It Off, Chicago, Bringing Down The House, Taxi, Last Holiday, Hairspray, Joyful Noise, 22 Jump Street and Girls Trip. She was the star of her own television show, The Queen Latifah Show.
Latifah has won other prestigious awards
The movie Chicago was a great hit in the theaters. Latifah received an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress. And, in 2006, Latifah received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Latifah has won a Grammy, Emmy, Golden Globe, Screen Actors Guild and a NAACP Image award. Currently, Latifah is the spokesperson for Cover Girl Cosmetics with her own line for women of color called the Queen Collection.
It is clear why Queen Latifah is the recipient of the prestigious Marion Anderson Award. She has proven that African American women are fierce, powerful, and fearless. Congratulations!!!!