Jennifer Hudson to sing anthem on Obama's big night

Tue Aug 26, 2008 2:26pm EDT
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LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Oscar-winning actress and singer Jennifer Hudson will sing the national anthem at the Democratic National Convention in Denver on Thursday, the night Barack Obama accepts his party's nomination for president.

Hudson, 26, a native of Obama's home town of Chicago, was asked to sing "The Star Spangled Banner" at the convention at the request of the Illinois senator, Theola Borden, her publicist at RCA Music Group, said on Tuesday.

Borden said Hudson performed for Obama once before early in her career at a local event in Chicago.

Hudson first gained public attention as a contestant during the third season of the hit television talent contest "American Idol" but ended up as the sixth finalist voted off the show.

Undaunted, Hudson went on to land the role of Effie White in the movie adaptation of the musical "Dreamgirls," based loosely on the story of the Motown act "The Supremes," for which she won an Academy Award as best supporting actress.

Her self-titled debut album, "Jennifer Hudson," is due for release on September 30 through RCA's Arista Records label. Hudson will appear in the upcoming film "The Secret Life of Bees," opposite Queen Latifah, Alicia Keys and Dakota Fanning, debuting in theaters on October 17.

(Editing by Bob Tourtellotte and Cynthia Osterman)

<p>Actress Jennifer Hudson poses at the 2008 MTV Movie Awards in Los Angeles June 1, 2008. REUTERS/Fred Prouser</p>