National anthem auditions for Crosscutters games

O’ Say Can You Sing? If you have vocal talent, you can get your 15 minutes of fame on May 1 right on stage at the Community Arts Center, 220 W. Fourth St., in front of a few, and then, hopefully, in front of thousands.

But don’t be shy, because your talent will be judged by a “celebrity” panel while you sing. The Crosscutters are looking for a top-notch singers to perform the national anthem at Crosscutters’ games this season. June 18 marks the opening night of the Crosscutters’ 15th anniversary season.

This also will mark the first time that the Crosscutters will select singers by holding an event at the CAC instead of the historic Bowman Field.

“It’s just a change of pace,” Crosscutters’ Vice President of Marketing and Public Relations Gabe Sinicropi, said.

“We thought it would be cool to give people a chance to audition on stage at the CAC, and then possibly get chosen to perform at historic Bowman Field.”

The Crosscutters have 38 anthem-singer spots to fill each season and while they welcome back past performers, they like to look for new ones to add to the list each year, Sinicropi said.

The celebrity panel, who is judging the auditions, is comprised of CAC Executive Director Rob Steele, Clear Channel air personality, “e-dub” a.k.a. Eric White, a staff member of the Sun-Gazette, Crosscutters’ mascot, Boomer, and possibly a few others.

“I’m honored to be a judge for the Crosscutter’s anthem auditions. I am really excited to see who turns out. Williamsport and Central PA are full of great, undiscovered talent,” Variety 97.7’s DJ, Eric White, said.

“We just wanted people from the area who know talent when they see it,” Sinicropi said.

The audition process is fairly simple and open to anyone and everyone who wishes to try out.

After the person performs, the judges will rate them on a scale of 1 to 10, then those that scored the best will be called back to schedule a one-game performance during the season. They also will get four tickets to the game at which they perform.

“Prior to that [holding auditions in this manner], we would just audition people as they popped up and them schedule them if we thought they cut the mustard, so to speak,” Sinicropi said. “In the past, we also held a contest-audition to sing the national anthem for opening night. We did that for many years in conjunction with Clear Channel Radio. They would hold auditions over the air for a week and then we’d do the finals live on their morning show and have the audience choose a winner. I also remember one year where we held the opening night auditions at center court at the Lycoming Mall,” he said.

They never turn anyone away and encourage as many people to show up as possible, as they want a wide variety of talent to choose from.

In addition, any kind of performer may try out – not just soloists. Any type of groups or musicians are welcome. Jokingly, Sinicropi recalls some humorous instances from past auditions.

“… Let’s just say this just because your child is young, cute and sounds good in your living room singing Beyonce, it doesn’t necessarily mean that they can sing the national anthem in front of a couple thousand people at Bowman Field,” he said. In fact Bowman field has 4,200 seats.

So, to those that have a bit of unique talent, put on your patriotic hats and visit the Community Arts Center, 220 W. Fourth St., 6 to 8 p.m. May 1 to audition.