I was browsing through the SPG Moments website when I came across a recently ended auction that caught my attention. Someone spent 230,500 Starpoints on an AUDITION to sing the National Anthem at a Chicago Cubs vs. New York Mets game. And since this was for an audition that the top three bidder would be competing for, that means two other people may have bid close to the same number of points to compete for the spot:
Get your chance to sing in front of thousands at Wrigley Field before the Cubs play ball. If you are one of the top three bidders for this package, you will have the opportunity to submit an audition tape, of you singing “The Star Spangled Banner”, to the Cubs for review. One of the three will be selected by the Cubs to sing before the July 18 Cubs vs. Mets game. The other two top bidders will get their Starpoints back and a pair of tickets each to the SPG Luxury Suite for a game of their choice during the second half of regular-season play. Don’t miss out on this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
Please note: All bidders must be able to attend the 18 July 2016 Cubs game and arrive three hours before game start for rehearsal.
The Sing the National Anthem Before a Cubs Game package includes:
- Opportunity for one (1) to sing the national anthem at Wrigley Field before the Cubs play the Mets on 18 July 2016
- Two (2) seats for the Chicago Cubs game against the New York Mets on Monday, 18 July 2016
- Complimentary food and beverages for two (2) while in the suite
Guidelines and restrictions: The three (3) highest bidders for this package will win the opportunity to submit an audition tape to the Cubs. The Cubs will select one (1) bidder to sing before the July 18 game. The two (2) other bidders will have their Starpoints returned and receive (2) SPG Luxury Suite tickets each to any game in the second half of regular season play.
In college I worked at the L.A. Staples Center and heard my share of awful singers who couldn’t carry a tune, so it can’t be that hard to get a gig like this. The way the auction works is that the top three bidders will get to audition and the best one will be chosen to sing at the game. The other two will get their points back and receive two SPG Luxury Suite tickets to any game in the second half of regular season play (yes, I copied the second half of that sentence from the SPG website).
In other words, it pays to botch the audition since you walk away with two free game tickets in addition to getting your points back. As for the winner, I don’t know that singing the National Anthem at a baseball game is worth 230,500 points unless they’re doing it to get “discovered.” Even so, I doubt it will get them the career break they think it will (“Mariah Carey was discovered after singing the National Anthem at a Knicks game” said no one ever). An aspiring singer with a decent voice could probably get more attention by putting videos of him or herself singing up on Youtube – it worked for Ariana Grande and Justin Bieber – or sending A&R execs a demo tape. If this was at an L.A. Dodgers game, I’d understand how the exposure could possibly be valuable (even though tons of people sing at Dodgers games without having to redeem Starpoints for the opportunity), but this is in Chicago. Bottom line, I don’t think spending 230,000+ Starpoints would be the best way to launch a singing career, which is about the only plausible reason I can think of for bidding on a package like this.
To give you an idea of how far 230,500 Starpoints will go, Starwood requires 2,000 – 35,000 points for a free night across seven hotel categories. That’s a minimum of 6 nights at a top-tier hotel (not factoring the 5th night free) or a maximum of 115 free nights at a Category 1 Starwood hotel the winner will give up in exchange for singing at a baseball game.
This isn’t nearly as bad as the couple who redeemed 870,000 Starpoints for two business class tickets to Rome (and the fact that Starwood highlighted this redemption in their “fun fact” summary for 2012), but it’s a bit of a head scratcher – especially for the person who actually wants to come out ahead at the audition. For the other two people who lose out, it’s actually kind of a smart move.
What are your thoughts? Is this one of the best or worst uses of Starwood points?
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