There She Was: Donna Axum as Miss America sings at Robinson Auditorium in May 1964

Photo from Encyclopedia of Arkansas, courtesy of Mike Polston

While she had made a few other appearances in Little Rock during her reign as Miss America, on May 11, 1964, Donna Axum appeared in concert at Robinson Auditorium.

She sang with the Arkansas Symphony (not directly connected with the current Arkansas Symphony Orchestra) and the Arkansas Choral Society.

The concert was part of the Arkansas State Festival of the Arts which was an annual event from the late 1950s until the late 1960s.

Before her death in the fall of 2018, her final two appearances at Robinson were in conjunction with the Miss Arkansas pageant being held there.

In June 2017, she appeared, along with several other former Miss Arkansas title holders, at the 2017 Miss Arkansas pageant.  She was joined on stage by Savvy Shields, who like Miss Axum, was a former Miss Arkansas who held the title of Miss America. She and Savvy were both back at Robinson in June 2018 for the Miss Arkansas pageant.

When the Miss Arkansas pageant is back on stage at Robinson in June 2019, there will undoubtedly be a tinge of sadness that Donna Axum is not on stage with the other former title holders.