Nick Lachey to Anchor New Opening Night Celebration Of Cincinnati’s Western & Southern Financial Group Masters & Women’s Open

July 22, 2009 06:30 AM

Cincinnati’s own Nick Lachey will be the feature performer at a new Opening Night Celebration to kick off the Western & Southern Financial Group Masters & Women’s Open which also will include a reunited Team Lachey, the winners of NBC’s Clash of the Choirs, and Blessid Union of Souls.

Lachey will anchor the new event by singing the national anthem prior to the first main draw match of the Monday evening session which is slated to include former world No. 1 Kim Clijsters. The Opening Night Celebration begins at 7 p.m. on Monday, August 10.

“This year, the women’s event has been significantly upgraded and we’re bringing a new format to tennis fans in the Midwest by having the best in the sport play back to back,” said tournament director Bruce Flory. “This event on Monday night is our way of highlighting those improvements and kicking off what will be two great weeks of tennis.”

Prior to Lachey and Clijsters, Cincinnati’s own Blessid Union of Souls will perform a medley of its most famous songs. Blessed Union of Souls has created a platinum-selling CD (Home) and has recorded six songs which spent time in the Billboard Top 20. Two of their most famous songs, I Believe and Hey Leonardo (She Likes Me For Me) both spent several weeks on the Billboard Top 100.

Team Lachey, the choir hand-picked by Lachey and the winner of NBC’s Clash of the Choirs in 2007, will also hit Center court to perform together for the first time in over a year.

The Kings Firecrackers, a jump-roping team which has preformed for crowds at 10 different universities, the Chicago Bulls and the Harlem Globetrotters in this year alone, also will perform its jump roping routine on Center Court.

The celebration will start at 7 p.m., followed by the first match of the women’s main draw at 7:30. Tickets to the event are $18 for adults and $9 for children 14 and under. Tickets are on sale now by calling 513-651-0303 or visiting Tickets also are available via TicketMaster at 800-745-3000 or

The 2009 Western & Southern Financial Group Masters & Women’s Open will be held August 8-23 at the Lindner Family Tennis Center in Mason, Ohio, about 25 miles from downtown Cincinnati and 25 miles from downtown Dayton.

Cincinnati’s tennis tournament tradition started in 1899, making the W&SFG Masters & Women’s Open the oldest tournament in the nation still played in its original city. The men’s W&SFG Masters is one of nine ATP World Tour Masters 1000 events, and the W&SFG Women’s Open is a Premier Level Event on the Sony Ericsson WTA Tour, and the only WTA event in the Midwest.

NOTE: Nick Lachey also will be appearing at a reception prior to his performance at the Lindner Family Tennis Center on Monday, August 10. To purchase tickets to that reception or for more information, fans may contact Hank J. Reed at 513-604-4028 or