Biography: Lena Mary Calhoun Horne was born on June 30, 1917 in Brooklyn, New York to Edwin Fletcher Horne, Jr. and Edna Louise Scottron. She danced at the Cotton Club after being pulled out of school at 16 by her mother to audition for the chorus. She sang at nightclubs such as Café Society and the Trocadero. She signed a contract with MGM. She was involved in the Civil Rights movement, and was awarded the Spingarn Medal from the NAACP. She married Louis Jones, with whom she had her children Gail and Teddy. She then married Lennie Hayton.
Film/TV Credits: Film credits include: "The Wiz," "Cabin in the Sky," "Stormy Weather," "Meet Me in Las Vegas," "Till the Clouds Roll By," "Ziegfeld Follies," "Words and Music," "Thousands Cheer," "Death of a Gunfighter," "Two Girls and a Sailor," and "The Duke Is Tops." Television credits include: "The Cosby Show," "Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In," "A Different World," "Sanford and Son," and "The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson."
Other Awards: Received a star on the Walk of Fame in 1960. Received a Kennedy Center Honor in 1984.
Trivia: The marquees of Broadway theaters were dimmed in her honor on May 11, 2010.