This evening, AVA alumna, Kansas City native and celebrated mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato will perform the National Anthem during Game 7 of the World Series. DiDonato was selected by Major League Baseball to sing after an online voting campaign #letjoycesing went viral. The campaign followed an online poll on kansascity.com that Ms. DiDonato overwhelmingly won before MLB selected Trisha Yearwood and Phillip Phillips to sing the anthem before Games 1 and 2 in Kansas City.
This is certainly not the first time opera has entered the world of athletics. Opera has had a significant impact in sports, and some of the best performers in the world have offered their talents on the field.
This past year alone, three massive sporting events featured opera singers as some of the main stars.
Some opera singers have even become an integral part of a sports team. Baltimore native, AVA alumnus and ‘America’s’ tenor Richard Troxell frequently performs the National Anthem for his beloved Orioles, most recently during the American League Championship Series.
And of course, Philadelphia icon Kate Smith, the lucky charm of our hometown Philadelphia Flyers, continues to inspire hockey fans in Philadelphia with her rendition of “God Bless America ".
Smith's rendition of "God Bless America" is also played during the 7th-inning stretch of New York Yankees home games.
The Yankees also had a longtime association with another opera singer, Metropolitan Opera baritone Robert Merrill sang the opening day anthem for the team for over 30 years. Here he is before Game 3 of the 1976 World Series.
These operatic performances have captivated and moved sport’s audiences, and will continue to do so for years to come.
Written by AVA intern Camille Mola
Camille Mola is a Delaware County native and a recent Penn State University graduate, where she studied public relations. There, she was a member of the Delta Gamma sorority and was involved with the Penn State Dance Marathon (THON). She is excited to intern with AVA this season and to expand her love and knowledge of music.