Super Bowl: What you need to know about the national anthem, pregame entertainment
(NEXSTAR) – The Super Bowl is here, but before the game begins, the NFL will provide some pregame entertainment. That includes the national anthem, “America the Beautiful,” and a special flyover at State Farm Stadium.
First, the national anthem.
The NFL announced in January that singer-songwriter Chris Stapleton will sing the national anthem. The acclaimed country singer is an eight-time Grammy, 15-time Country Music Association, and 10-time Academy of Country Music award-winner.
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Stapleton is well-known for hits like “Tennessee Whiskey,” “Broken Halos,” and “You Should Probably Leave.” He’s just the latest country singer to perform the national anthem at the Super Bowl. Last year, it was Mickey Guyton, and the year prior, it was Eric Church singing alongside R&B singer Jazmine Sullivan.
Troy Kotsur, an Arizona native and renowned actor known for his work on the movie “CODA,” will perform the national anthem in American Sign Language.
During the national anthem, the NFL announced a special flyover honoring 50 years of women flying in the U.S. Navy will be conducted. Female aviators will be part of the formation, which will include an F-35C Lightning II from the “Argonauts” of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 147, two F/A-18F Super Hornets from the “Flying Eagles” of VFA-122, and an EA-18G Growler from the “Vikings” of Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) 129.
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Singing “America the Beautiful” is Babyface, a 12-time Grammy Award-winning recording artist, songwriter, and producer. In addition to collaborating with the likes of Beyonce, Madonna, Mariah Carey, and Mary J. Blige, Babyface’s hits include “Whip Appeal” and “Two Occasions.”
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Last month, Babyface took to Twitter to say he was “truly excited and honored to perform America the Beautiful at Super Bowl LVII.”
Colin Denny, a member of the Navajo Nation in Arizona who is deaf, will sign “America the Beautiful.” Denny is a research assistant at the University of Arizona’s College of Education. The 32-year-old, signing through an interpreter, said he hopes “to inspire and empower those who are on their own to look around and see that there are other people out there who are just like them, and to not feel so isolated or lonely.”
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Fans of the ABC show “Abbott Elementary” will recognize a familiar face during the pregame entertainment. Sheryl Lee Ralph, who plays Barbara Howard on the sitcom, will sing “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” which is often referred to as “The Black National Anthem” according to NAACP.
“I wish that my parents were still alive to see it and experience it with me,” Ralph said in a recent interview. “I know this would’ve been something they would love to have been a part of. I do miss them.”
Deaf performer Justina Miles will sign “Lift Every Voice and Sing” and provide the ASL rendition of Rihanna’s halftime show.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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