Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Elizabeth Taylor Greenfield (ca. 1824–1876), dubbed "The Black Swan", was an African American singer considered the best-known black concert artist of her time. She was noted by James M. Trotter for her "remarkably sweet tones and wide vocal compass". Greenfield was born a slave in Natchez, Mississippi, but was adopted by a Philadephia Quaker as an infant. She studied music as a child although it was forbidden by the Society of Friends. At this point she began to snig at private parties. Her concert debut was in 1851 presented for the Buffalo Musical Association . From 1851–53 she toured as managed by Colonel J.H. Wood. In April of 1853, she went to London as patroned by the Duchess of Sutherland and Harriet Beecher Stowe. She was taught by Queen Victoria's Chapel Royal organist, George Smart . She performed a command performance for the queen.
Returning to the United States, she toured and conducted a Philadelphia music studio. In the 1860s she created an opera troupe which she directed.
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