Shawnee student sang her way to the big screen at the Phillies game on Sept. 2

Molly Flynn was selected to sing “God Bless America” during the seventh inning stretch.

Molly Flynn sings “God Bless America” during the seventh inning stretch of the Philadelphia Phillies vs Chicago Cubs game on Sept. 2. Photo by The Phillies/Chanda Jones.

Shawnee High School senior Molly Flynn sang her way to the big screen at the Philadelphia Phillies vs. Chicago Cubs game on Sept. 2.

Growing up around music, Flynn knew from a young age that was a path she wanted to take. Starting out in the choir group at Medford Memorial Middle School, Flynn quickly tried out for All South Jersey Choir — eventually being nominated for All Eastern Regional Choir, marking her as one of the top 20 selected individuals for the Soprano One section.

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“I just kept going with it because it was such a great environment for me to continue to develop and learn and grow as a musician and a person,” Flynn said.

Flynn said her director throughout middle school, Linda Cecil, was one of her biggest inspirations in continuing to pursue music. She said Cecil saw the potential in her and encouraged her to keep going, even through the times she didn’t get the parts she auditioned for.

As she entered high school, she began meeting with a voice teacher, Steven Schnurman, who she feels has helped her truly develop as a singer — providing her with useful techniques on how the sound of her voice resonates and how to isolate each muscle to project her voice in the desired way.

At Shawnee, she has been involved with the choral program since she was a freshman, and is now the president of “Shawnee Singers,” while she is simultaneously in her second year with the girls ensemble group.

Flynn said that throughout her time at Shawnee, she’s had helpful resources and supportive directors, Gina Kehl and Robert Joubert.

Flynn recently gained one of her greatest accomplishments to date, singing “God Bless America” during the seventh inning stretch of the Phillies game.

Flynn came across this opportunity after she and her father went to a game over the summer and he inquired about the steps Flynn would have to take to be considered.

Flynn followed the prompts on the website and sent in her recording, and was notified in late August that she would have the chance to sing in front of more than 36,000 people.

“It was kind of nerve-wracking, but at the same time I really loved doing it. I was thinking ‘how many people get to do this in their lifetime?’” Flynn said. “I was looking around and was so grateful just to be there and have that opportunity.”

Performing in front of a crowd of that capacity only solidified her dreams of pursuing music in college. Flynn plans to study classical voice and music education at either Eastman School of Music or New England Conservatory next fall.

Flynn has previously attended the Music Horizons program at Eastman School of Music, where she landed a lead role in the opera “The Magic Flute.”

She said being on stage felt right to her, and hopes to one day fulfill her goal of performing opera at NYC’s Metropolitan Opera House.

Flynn attended her first opera at age 15, and she said something about the experience struck her.

“Although there was that language barrier there was something so deep and powerful that transcended language. There are so many things words can’t express. Opera is a combination of art and a combination of dance and music, orchestral and vocal, it’s something so much larger than life and so expressive — it’s pure emotion,” Flynn said. “The sound of opera is so big and beautiful, and it shows the power of the human voice. It captures something that other things can’t to me.”

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