5 Facts About Renee Fleming, The Super Bowl’s National Anthem Singer
Before the Super Bowl kicks off on Feb. 2, but after you go to the grocery store to buy Lil' Smokies, the national anthem will be sung. It tends to be performed by a pop star. For instance, last year's singer was Alicia Keys. This year the singer is someone who you may not have heard of. Renée Fleming will sing the national anthem at this year's Super Bowl, and if that name sounds new to you, you're not alone. So you don't miss anything during the game by Googling "Super Bowl national anthem singer" at the last minute, here's five facts about Renée Fleming to get you up to speed.
1. She's an opera singer.
Fleming, a soprano, has performed in numerous operas including Mozart's Le nozze di Figaro and Verdi's Otello. Expect this to be one of the longest renditions of "The Star Spangled Banner" that you've ever heard.
2. She's performed the national anthem before.
Fleming performed the national anthem at another major sporting event when she sang at the 2003 World Series. During the World Series, Fleming made a mistake on the lyrics and had to ad lib some of the song. She'll probably do better this time. Anyone would make sure they had the lyrics down after that.
3. She has four Grammys.
In 2013, 2010, 2003, and 1999, Renée Fleming won the Grammy Award for Best Classical Voice Solo. In addition, she was nominated for the category in three other years.
4. She is the first non-pop singer to sing the anthem at the Super Bowl in a long time.
In the past six years the singers have been: Alicia Keys, Kelly Clarkson, Christina Aguilera, Carrie Underwood, Jennifer Hudson, and Jordin Sparks. You didn't have to look up any of them did you? (As a side note: Holy cow, they really like American Idol contestants!)
5. She released an album of indie rock covers.
In 2010 Fleming released the album Dark Hope on which she covered "No One's Gonna Love You" by Band of Horses, "Soul Meets Body" by Death Cab For Cute, and "Intervention" by Arcade Fire among others. The covers are disappointingly not over-the-top and operatic.