Canadiens make unusual Game 7 arrangement for anthem singer (if necessary)

Canadiens make unusual Game 7 arrangement for anthem singer (if necessary)

Yesterday, we talked about poor Corey Hart, who was forced to cancel his hometown retirement show (on his birthday no less!) to accomodate a potential Game 7 between the Montreal Canadiens and New York Rangers at Bell Centre.

But there's another singer that will face a scheduling conflict if the Canadiens manage to win Thursday night and force a Game 7, and this one's a little more notable: Ginette Reno. The vocal legend who's been tearing the house down with her brilliant renditions of the Canadian anthem at Montreal's games all through the postseason, can't make it Saturday.

She won't be far away, though. Reno is scheduled to perform at Place des Arts, which is literally across the street, on the other side of Rue Ste-Catherine. Problem is, her show starts at 7:30, and the Canadiens' show doesn't start until later.

But fret not: the Canadiens have an emergency plan -- a Reno 911, if you will. No, it's not to get Corey Hart to replace her, since he's available now. Reno will still sing the anthem. She'll just do it from over there. Frankly, with her booming voice, I bet it would carry, but they'll send a camera.

From the Montreal Gazette:

If that happens, the Bell Centre would send a camera to Place des Arts to film Reno singing O Canada, Narimane Doumandji, the singer’s publicist said.

The live rendition of the national anthem at her concert would be shown on the Jumbotron at the Bell Centre.

So basically, if there's a Game 7 going on at Bell Centre, "O Canada" simply gets added to the setlist at  Place des Arts.

It had to happen. Reno has taken on the aura of a good luck charm in these playoffs, so playing a Game 7 without her setting the stage is downright unconscionable. Although one wonders if it counts if she's not in the building. Will the hockey gods accept this?

Even if you don't believe in good luck charms, though, Reno fires up the building in a way that no one else can.

“I think they love her more than they love us," Lars Eller said.

In a Game 7 on home ice, you want those home fans loud, and no one gets them quite as loud as Reno. If she gets the chance, when she's done singing, she'll be able to hear the fan response from cross the street.