January 14, 2009 / 10:59 PM / in 9 years

Jennifer Hudson to sing at Super Bowl

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Actress and recording star Jennifer Hudson will sing the U.S. national anthem at the Super Bowl in her first public performance since the shooting deaths of her mother, brother and nephew, her Web site said on Wednesday.

<p>Singer Jennifer Hudson sings the national anthem on the final day of the 2008 Democratic National Convention in Denver, Colorado, August 28, 2008. REUTERS/Eric Thayer</p>

The former “American Idol” contestant and Oscar-winning “Dreamgirls” actress will open the NBC broadcast of the National Football League championship on February 1 in Tampa Bay, Florida, with her rendition of “The Star-Spangled Banner.”

Rock veteran Bruce Springsteen already has been announced for the coveted half-time slot during the game, usually the most watched U.S. television broadcast of the year.

Hudson’s Super Bowl gig will come five days before she is due to sing in Los Angeles at the 2009 MusiCares Person of the Year show, an event leading up to the 51st annual Grammy Awards on February 8. Hudson’s self-titled debut release is nominated for a Grammy as best R&B album.

In October, Hudson’s mother, brother and nephew were shot to death in her hometown of Chicago. Authorities have charged Hudson’s estranged brother-in-law, William Balfour, with murder in the slaying of her family members.

Hudson, 27, competed in the reality talent show “American Idol” in 2004. She was eliminated midway through the competition but revived her career with a critically acclaimed performance in the 2006 musical “Dreamgirls,” which earned her an Academy Award as best supporting actress. Last year, she co-starred in the movie “The Secret Life of Bees.”

Reporting by Alex Dobuzinskis; editing by Steve Gorman and Mohammad Zargham

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