Mary Costa Received Honorary Degree
On November 11, 2014, UT presented Knoxville native and internationally renowned entertainer Mary Costa with an honorary doctorate during a special event at the Natalie L. Haslam Music Center. A professional opera singer who has performed in more than 40 operas, four films, and numerous television programs, Costa is best known for providing the voice of Princess Aurora in Disney’s Sleeping Beauty in 1958. Costa, who performed professionally for 38 years, has been honored extensively for her artistic contributions. In 1999, she was named a Disney Legend for her contributions to the Walt Disney Company. The Metropolitan Opera Guild honored Costa in 2001 with the Distinguished Verdi Performance of the Twentieth Century Award. President George W. Bush appointed her to the National Council on the Arts, on which she served from 2003 to 2007. Costa has spoken at schools and colleges nationwide and has served as an ambassador for Childhelp, a national nonprofit group that aids victims of child abuse and neglect.