Actress and icon Sheryl Lee Ralph is still flying high on the heels of her historic Emmy win and added another legendary nod to her belt during Sunday night’s Super Bowl LVII.
Ralph sang a passionate rendition of the Negro National Anthem, “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” and brought the crowd to its feet with a standing ovation.
The original “Dream Girl” took to her social media to share that today’s date of February 12th was the first time that the song had ever been performed over 123 years ago.
“123 years ago today Lift Every Voice and Sing was performed publicly for the 1st time. Today I will sing it for the 1st time as part of the @SuperBowl pre-game show in the stadium!” said Ralph.
123 years ago today Lift Every Voice and Sing was performed publicly for the 1st time. Today I will sing it for the 1st time as part of the @SuperBowl pre game show in the stadium! pic.twitter.com/Mh805zQbX5— sheryl lee ralph (@thesherylralph) February 12, 2023
It is no coincidence that I will be singing the Black National Anthem, Lift Every Voice and Sing at the Super Bowl on the same date it was first publicly performed 123 years ago (February 12, 1900). Happy Black History Month! @nfl @rocnation @SavageXFenty— sheryl lee ralph (@thesherylralph) February 12, 2023
Tune in at 3pm/6pmEST. pic.twitter.com/1rPopQ9jtV
NAACP leader James Weldon Johnson initially wrote the anthem as a poem of the same name, which was later set to music and turned into a song.
The ballad has inspired generations and served as the anchor for protests and sit-ins during the civil rights movement.
During last year’s Super Bowl, the anthem was performed by the gospel duo Mary Mary, although their performance was outside.
Ralph’s performance marks the first time it has been performed inside the stadium.
[BEFORE YOU GO!!! Bayou Beat News can also be found in PRINT at a store near you. Click the link below to check out our E-Edition!]
MORE SUPER BOWL COVERAGE: