Multitalented singer-actress-dancerJulianne Hough will sing the national anthem before the 92nd Indianapolis 500 on Sunday, May 25 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Universal Music Group Nashville artist Hough also will perform songs fromher upcoming, country music debut album, "Julianne Hough," during pre-raceceremonies.
The album will be released May 20, and she will begin a national tour with country superstar Brad Paisley on June 11.
Hough is best known for being a two-time professional dance champion on thehit ABC series, "Dancing with the Stars," which matches celebrities insports and entertainment with professional dances. Her winning partner in fall 2007 was two-time Indianapolis 500 champion Helio Castroneves, as their electrifying performances captivated millions of fans.
"I am so excited to be able to sing the national anthem at this year's Indy500," Hough said. "I've never been to the race, and it will give me a chance to cheer on my friend and dancing partner Helio Castroneves." Hough, 19, moved from her native Utah to London at age 10 to study performing arts. After five years away from her family in the United Kingdom, she left behind her blossoming, award-winning international dance career to return to the United States to pursue her dreams of singing country music. She moved to Los Angeles, working as a dancer while pursuing her musical dreams.
While winning consecutive seasons of "Dancing with the Stars" wit hpartners Apolo Anton Ohno and Castroneves, the effervescent Hough made regular trips to Nashville to further her career in country music. Her Los Angeles management firm introduced her to Scott Siman, manager of country superstar Tim McGraw. Siman then introduced her to veteran producer David Malloy, and the two teamed to record the moving "Will You Dance WithMe" as a fund-raising project for tornado victims in Kansas for the American Red Cross. The song was released to iTunes and Wal-Mart the same week that Hough won her first "Dancing with the Stars" title in May 2007, and it peaked at No. 8 on the country charts despite never being released to radio.
Soon after, Hough landed a deal with UMGN and a spot on the MercuryNashville roster. It was a fitting home for Hough, who cites UMGN artistsReba McEntire and Shania Twain as her chief influences. "Julianne danced into the hearts of Indianapolis 500 fans everywhere through her performances with Helio during 'Dancing with the Stars,'" said Joie Chitwood, Indianapolis Motor Speedway president and CEO. "We're happy to welcome her to the Speedway and eager for her to show her impressive musical talent to the world before 'The Greatest Spectacle in Racing.'"
"Julianne Hough," her Mercury Nashville debut album recorded in Nashville, features the infectious debut single, "That Song In My Head." Other tracks include "Hide Your Matches," "Help Me, Help You," "Jimmy Ray McGee" and "My Hallelujah Song."