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Alumna Performs at Kennedy Funeral

Grammy Award-winning mezzo-soprano Susan Graham sang "Ave Maria" during the funeral mass for Massachusetts Sen. Edward M. Kennedy.

Written by Sally Logue Post

Susan Graham

Susan Graham graduated from Texas Tech in 1983.

Texas Tech University alumna Susan Graham, a Grammy Award-winning mezzo-soprano, sang “Ave Maria” during the funeral mass for Massachusetts Sen. Edward M. Kennedy. The Aug. 29 service was held at the Basilica of Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Boston. President Barack Obama delivered the eulogy. The Baltimore Sun’s Tim Smith describes her performance as “one of the most intrinsically beautiful voices of our time, not to mention exceptional interpretive instincts, and this solemn occasion benefitted greatly from her art.”

Watch the performance.

Susan Graham is one of today’s foremost stars of opera and recital. She can be heard in the great opera houses and with the most prestigious orchestras in the world. Her extensive discography includes a Grammy® Award-winning recording of the songs of American composer Charles Ives on the Warner Classics label. An expert in French music, Graham holds the honorary title of Chevalier de la Légion d’Honneur, bestowed by the French government. Born in New Mexico and raised in Texas, Susan Graham studied at Texas Tech University and the Manhattan School of Music, which awarded her an honorary doctorate in 2008. She won the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and the Schwabacher Award from San Francisco Opera, as well as a Career Grant from the Richard Tucker Music Foundation. She was Musical America‘s 2004 Vocalist of the Year, and, since 2006, her hometown of Midland has proclaimed September 5 “Susan Graham Day.”

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College of Visual and Performing Arts

The College of Visual and Performing Arts at Texas Tech University offers a diverse array of programs and courses in art, music, theatre and dance.

The college seeks to prepare students who will be leaders in the profession by employing the highest standards in performance, teaching, research, and artistic and creative vision.

The college includes the:

Notable Alumni

Texas Tech has more than 28,000 students pursuing 150 degree programs through 11 colleges. Our graduates have governed states, flown space missions and won Pulitzers. See other notable alumni.