NFL Players Choir Pays Tribute to America at XLV Countdown
The NFL PLAYERS Choir will pay a patriotic tribute to America at XLV Countdown Live From Cowboys Stadium, Friday, September 10 at 7:30 p.m. CST in Arlington, Texas. This event promises to be an exciting night of music, and will feature country music star Tim McGraw and a rare performance by classical pianist and North Texas native Van Cliburn.
Approximately 35 former NFL players will sing “America the Beautiful,” backed by the 92-piece University of North Texas Symphony Orchestra. The third act of the Host Committee’s Kick-Off Concert Series, this 35,000-plus person event kicks off the official countdown to Super Bowl XLV, and celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Dallas Cowboys and former Cowboy Emmitt Smith’s induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
“We’re really excited about having the NFL PLAYERS Choir as a part of the Countdown,” said Kit Sawers, Vice President of Special Events for the North Texas Super Bowl XLV Host Committee. “It will be fun to see these players in the stadium, on stage, garbed in choir robes and not on the field playing ball. I know the fans will really enjoy this special performance.”
The NFL PLAYERS Choir is a part of the Super Bowl Gospel Celebration, an NFL sanctioned event that has been a part of Super Bowl Weekend since 1999. The choir made its debut in 2008 when more than 40 NFL players showed off their vocal talents under the direction of Grammy Award-winning gospel artist Donnie McClurkin.
“This is a great honor to have the Host Committee include the NFL PLAYERS Choir as a part of such a momentous event,” said Melanie Few-Harrison, President of Results Inc. and Founder and Executive Producer of the Super Bowl Gospel Celebration. “This is the first time the choir has performed outside of SBGC, and this is big, like everything in Texas.”
The choir traditionally is comprised of active and former players, however because the Countdown takes place opening weekend of the regular NFL season, only former players will perform. If this performance is missed, the choir, with active and former players, can be seen at the 12th Annual Super Bowl Gospel Celebration on Friday, February 4, 2011, at Music Hall in Fair Park in Dallas, TX.
So, can they really sing? According to Few-Harrison, “We have some accomplished musicians with great voices who have been with us from the beginning. It seems that the players who can sing know other players who can sing, and it happens from there. We have been blessed with some great voices and this event has allowed us to welcome in new members and new voices.”
The choir has boasted Super Bowl Champions, Pro-Bowlers, All-Pros, team MVPs, and even a Heisman Trophy Winner. The roster for the Countdown includes a member that played in Super Bowl I and II, coached by Vince Lombardi and was the first player to play in five Super Bowls, Marv Fleming (Packers/Dolphins). Choir members also include Tim Brown (Raiders), Darren Carrington (Chargers/Broncos), Dexter Clinkscale (Cowboys), Marvin Cobb (Bengals, Steelers, Vikings), Don Davis (Patriots), M.E. Tony Davis (Bengals), Ebenezer Ekuban (Broncos), Darrell Green (Redskins), J.D. Hill (Bills), Raghib “Rocket” Ismail (Raiders/Cowboys), Roy Jefferson (Steelers/Colts/Redskins), Ray Jackson (Bengals/Titans), Olrick Johnson (Patriots), Sydney Justin (Rams), Eddie Kennison (Chiefs/Rams), Henry Lawrence (Raiders), Larry Lee (Eagles), Eugene Lockhart (Cowboys/Patriots), Mike Martin (Bengals), Stockar McDougle (Lions), Michael Merriweather (Steelers/Vikings/Jets/Packers), Drew Pearson (Cowboys), Steve Pierce (Browns), Marcus Price (Chargers/Bills/Saints), Isaiah Robertson (Rams/Bills), Je’Mone Smith (Eagles), Neil Smith (Chiefs/Broncos/Chargers), Otto Stowe (Cowboys), Scott Turner (Redskins/Chargers/Broncos) and Tim Watson (Packers).