Monday, December 22, 2014

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SUNY Potsdam Graduate to Sing National Anthem

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CNY/NNY/S. Tier: SUNY Potsdam Graduate to Sing National Anthem
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Billy Joel, Beyonce, Mariah Carey, and Whitney Houston. They're just some of the superstars who have performed the national anthem at the Super Bowl. Sunday, opera singer Renée Fleming's name will be added to that list. As as our Matt Jarchow tells us, the SUNY Potsdam community will be cheering before the game even begins.

POTSDAM, N.Y. -- It's a familiar voice at SUNY Potsdam.

And on Sunday, the rest of America will hear it too, when Renée Fleming becomes the first opera singer to perform the national anthem at the Super Bowl.

Before Fleming became a four-time Grammy winner, she was a student at the Crane School of Music looking to make it big.

"Renee would practice and sing in here for hours a day, as well as the hall when she could get into the hall," said professor Jim Peterscak. "So she was a person who was not only a student but an avid practicer and singer, she would practice. I'd see her five, six hours a day singing."

As for the expected below freezing temperature?

Nothing new for someone used to the North Country, who also sang at the 1980 Olympics in Lake Placid.

"She's sung for the Olympics, she's well trained," Peterscak said. "She's born and bred and raised here as far as being a student in the North Country."

The current students at the Crane School of Music can't wait to see her take the field.

"It's really really neat actually to be able to say you come from the same school as someone that was also so famous and successful," student Noelle Flynt said. "And to think maybe someday that could be somebody from our class is really exciting."

"The fact that someone, one of our own alumni is coming from our school and singing and performing at a place that is widely known throughout American culture is just amazing and we're really proud to have our school represented by her," student Kevin Larsen said.

On Sunday, Fleming will represent Potsdam as over 100-million pairs of eyes and ears will see and hear her at one of the biggest stages of all.

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