Local student unleashes ‘Star-Spangled Banner’
by Nathan Beck
Sep 15, 2011 | 2365 views | 0 0 comments | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Gianna Andrews sings the national anthem before a football game. Lucjan Szewczyk/Press-Banner
Gianna Andrews sings the national anthem before a football game. Lucjan Szewczyk/Press-Banner
Lucjan Szewczyk/Press-Banner
Lucjan Szewczyk/Press-Banner
The silence was sincere as the flag flew high the day before Sept. 11. The somber quiet was only broken by the prevailing voice of Scotts Valley Middle School student Gianna Andrews.

Andrews, a seventh-grader at SVMS, let ring a perfect rendition of the “Star-Spangled Banner” before the ensuing kickoff for the Scotts Valley High School-Half Moon Bay varsity football game.

“I was really nervous,” Andrews said. “It was way harder at the junior varsity game. I had most of the butterflies out by this game.”

Andrews, 12, has sung since she was a toddler, but of late has pursued a more serious approach to singing. She takes voice lessons and has competed in Youth Focus talent shows in Silicon Valley. In competition, she has won a fine collection of awards under the tutelage of private voice instructor Bobbie Ward, including Grand Champion and a number of first-place finishes in her age group.

“Gianna is a rare talent,” Ward said. “I have had a number of students sing the national anthem, though none of them have been confident enough at her age.”

By the time she was eight, her father and mother noticed there was something special about her singing and nudged her along by recruiting Ward for guidance. Ward said that Andrews is a hard worker who takes assignments seriously and is eager to get everything done right.

When she’s not belting out the national anthem, Andrews likes to sing pop, rhythm and blues, along with other popular songs.

“She loves to sing and really is good at it,” said Mark Andrews, Gianna’s father. “She has always been singing as long as I can remember.”
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