Opera star Josh Groban is to pay a special tribute to the astronauts who lost their lives in the 2003 Columbia space shuttle disaster at this year's (04) SUPERBOWL.

The big sporting event falls on the first anniversary of the tragedy (01FEB04), when Columbia burned up while re-entering the earth's atmosphere - killing all crew members.

Groban is expected to perform his hit YOU RAISE ME UP, joined by crew members from an upcoming American space shuttle mission as part of a special pre-game salute to NASA.

The opera star is among the latest names added to the pre-game celebrations before NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS and CAROLINA PANTHERS kick off in Houston, Texas.

Country stars Willie Nelson and Toby Keith have also been added to the festivities.

Meanwhile, Houston native Beyonce Knowles will perform the National Anthem before the game. The half-time show will feature Janet Jackson, P DIDDY, KID ROCK and Nelly.

20/01/2004 21:20