Anita Darian

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Anita Darian (April 26, 1927 – February 1, 2015) was an American singer and actress who had an extensive career from the 1950s to the 2010s.

A soprano, Darian performed roles with the New York City Opera and was a featured soloist with the New York Philharmonic. She also performed and recorded several roles from musicals, including Julie in Show Boat, a recording for Columbia Masterworks in 1962 with John Raitt, Barbara Cook, and William Warfield. She portrayed Lady Thiang in the 1960 revival of The King and I at New York City Center with Barbara Cook as Anna and Farley Granger as the King. She made a number of classical recordings with various contemporary composers as well as solo albums for Fidelio Records and Kapp Records.

Born Anita Margaret Esgandarian in Detroit, Michigan of Armenian descent,[1] she studied opera at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia and the Juilliard School in New York, but first came to popular attention as a featured singer with the short-lived Sauter-Finegan jazz band of the mid-1950s, with whom she recorded for RCA Victor. She settled in New York City and worked in everything from opera and classical recitals to television jingles and cartoon voice-overs. She appeared in several television productions of musicals and operas from the 1950s to the 1970s.[2] She also sang the female soprano portion on The Tokens' 1961 #1 hit "The Lion Sleeps Tonight."

As late as 2012, she was featured in concerts honoring the Great American Songbook.[3]


Darian died on February 1, 2015, aged 87, at South Nassau Communities Hospital in Oceanside, New York due to surgical complications.[2]


  1. ^ "Log In - The New York Times". Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  2. ^ a b "Anita Darian Dies at Age 87". Retrieved 13 February 2015. 
  3. ^ "Events - The City of Long Beach, New York". Retrieved 13 February 2015. 

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