Sneak Peek: These musicians will open St. Louis Blues games with the national anthem this season | St. Louis Public Radio

Sneak Peek: These musicians will open St. Louis Blues games with the national anthem this season

Sep 12, 2017

The St. Louis Blues have invited nine acts to perform the national anthem at a game this upcoming season.

The invitations are the result of a partnership between the Blues and the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, an audition process that took place on a recent Saturday at Powell Hall. The Blues and SLSO selected more than one winner after being impressed by the abundance of local talent.

Open to solo singers, groups and instrumentalists, more than 650 contestants sent in video applications. Thirty-four were invited to participate.

The Audition Process

The audition consisted of two rounds. In the first round, performed behind a black curtain, contestants were required to select a song other than “The Star Spangled Banner.” The selection could be any style or genre.

Eighteen contestants moved to the second and final round and were asked to perform the national anthem in less than 1 minute and 30 seconds to three judges sitting about a dozen rows back.

Meet the judges

The three judges were St. Louis Blues anthem singer Charles Glenn, St. Louis Symphony Orchestra principal cellist Daniel Lee and St. Louis Symphony chorus director Amy Kaiser.
Credit Alex Heuer | St. Louis Public radio

Meet the winners and listen to their national anthem auditions

Scott Kennebeck 

Tenor Scott Kennebeck performing during the first round of auditions
Credit Alex Heuer | St. Louis Public Radio

River Kittens

St. Louis folk trio the River Kittens performing during the second round of auditions
Credit Alex Heuer | St. Louis Public Radio

James Bertels

James Bertels performing during the second round of auditions
Credit Alex Heuer | St. Louis Public Radio

Abigail Stahlschmidt

Abigail Stahlschmidt performing the national anthem
Credit Alex Heuer | St. Louis Public Radio

Saxissimo Saxophone Quartet

The Saxissimo Saxophone Quartet performing during the second round of auditions
Credit Alex Heuer | St. Louis Public Radio

Alex Armstrong

Alex Armstrong in a provided photo
Credit Alex Armstrong

Rebecca Drury

Rebecca Drury
Credit Freedom Photography

Montel Moore

Montel Moore
Credit Lance Omar Thurman

Joseph Niemeyer Jr.  

Niemeyer was selected to join St. Louis Blues anthem singer Charles Glenn in singing the national anthem at an upcoming game after his first round performance.

Charles Glenn (L) and Joseph Niemeyer Jr. (R) talk after Niemeyer's first round audition.
Credit Alex Heuer | St. Louis Public Radio

Follow Alex Heuer on Twitter @alexheuer

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