Mayor Tecklenburg to welcome MET Opera singer, Burke High grad back to Charleston

Source: Live 5
Published: Aug. 18, 2022 at 8:22 AM EDT
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CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - Charleston Mayor John Tecklenburg will welcome a Metropolitan Opera Company mezzo-soprano back to her hometown on Thursday.

Annette Spann-Lewis is a Charleston native and a 1971 graduate of Burke High School. She’s currently the longest-tenured member of the New York City-based Metropolitan Opera Company.

Spann-Lewis has performed with the MET for 35 years, performing more than 18 different operas per season.

Spann-Lewis will perform the national anthem for the season-opening game between Burke and R.B. Stall Friday night.

“I firmly believe that your example will encourage thousands of students, parents, teachers, as well as artists of all kinds and everyday citizens, to continue to strive for success in their chosen fields of work and study,” Mayor Tecklenburg said in his invitation letter. “Your presence would be significant and meaningful to thousands of Charlestonians.”

The game is set to be the first event at the newly renovated Stoney Field since its renovation.

Friday’s game is not the first time the singer has performed the national anthem at Stoney Field. In 1971, while a student at Burke High School, Spann Lewis performed the national anthem before a boxing exhibition featuring Muhammad Ali.

Gates for Friday’s game open at 6 p.m. and Spann-Lewis is scheduled to perform at 7:15 p.m. ahead of the game’s 7:30 p.m. kickoff.

A press conference to welcome her home is scheduled for 2:30 p.m. Thursday at the Charleston Place Hotel.

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