Shannon Tavarez Dies

Shannon Tavarez Dies of Cancer
Shannon Tavarez
Karen Detrick

updated 11/02/2010 at 04:00 PM EDT

originally published 11/02/2010 07:30AM

Shannon Tavarez, the 11-year-old Broadway singer whose fight against cancer drew the attention of Alicia Keys and Rihanna, has died.

The soprano from Queens, New York, who recently played Young Nala in The Lion King on Broadway, passed away after a long battle with acute myeloid leukemia.

Doctors had been unable to find a bone-marrow match for a transplant. Tavarez had received an umbilical-cord transplant in late August as an alternative.





Tavarez's struggle struck a chord with Keys and Rihanna, both of whom started their singing careers at an early age. Both had campaigned to get Tavarez the bone-marrow transplant she needed.

Tavarez made her Broadway debut in September 2009, playing four of eight shows a week in The Lion King until April, when she was diagnosed.

BroadwayWorld.com was the first to report Tavarez's death.

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