Wynton Marsalis Honored For Humanitarian Work

Jazz great Wynton Marsalis has been 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.

Marsalis has won nine Grammys and is the first jazz musician to win a Pulitzer Prize for music. His humanitarian work includes The Children’s Defense Fund and helping victims of Hurricane Katrina. He’s also the director of jazz at Lincoln Center.

Photo: Jason DeCrow/AP, file
Performing during a memorial service for actress Ruby Dee at The Riverside Church in New York.

During Tuesday night’s awards ceremony, the trumpeter and composer took the stage with his original septet – something that hasn’t happened in 20 years.

Past recipients include Richard Gere, Mia Farrow, James Earl Jones and Jon Bon Jovi.