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Performers audition to sing – or yodel – national anthem at TinCaps games

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Wednesday, March 6, 2013 - 7:13 am

For the past five springs, the TinCaps have auditioned area singers who would like to perform the national anthem during the season.

Tuesday afternoon was the final round for this year. Between 4 and 6 p.m. the talent came and went, singing to a panel of three TinCaps judges who would make the call as to who sings and who doesn't.

The youngest vocalist Tuesday was 9-year-old Arisa Hocharoen. Kids as young as 4 have auditioned for a spot before the minor-league baseball team's games and made the cut, said Lindsey Helmer-Kraner, creative director at Vocal Power Academy & Fitness, one of this year's judges.

Tom Barranda came all the way from Kendallville to audition. Barranda said he did it once for the Wizards, and having done theater in high school he gets the bug to perform every now and then.

For Emily Sedestrom, 17, this was her second year auditioning; she made the cut last year. Sedestrom was calm and poised as she sang.

Keirsch Cochran, marketing intern for the TinCaps, was handling the auditions along with some help from Helmer-Kraner and Dan Krleski, food and beverage operations manager for the TinCaps.

Cochran said one of the more unusual auditions they had this year involved a man who yodels. He apparently learned his skill from the man who yodels on the Yahoo commercial. He demonstrated his skills by yodeling "The Star-Spangled Banner." They have also had barbershop quartets, violinists and horn players.

Cochran said he wants to mix it up so season ticket holders will get something a little bit different at every game when they hear the national anthem.

The threesome said one of the most obvious signs someone has audition jitters is when they forget the words and create their own. They all agreed the key to getting selected is not just staying in tune, but also looking like someone who has the ability to lead a stadium full of people though the national anthem.

The lucky few who get selected will get the call Wednesday.