Take Me Out to the Ballgame: Dodger organist Nancy Bea Hefley

nancy bea

Dodger organist Nancy Bea Hefley talks about her three decades with LA’s Boys in Blue

Named by some fans as their “favorite Dodger” of all time, stadium organist Nancy Bea Hefley has livened up the ballpark with her signature playing since 1988.

Though the last few years have seen her playtime steadily dwindle, public outcry has been strong enough to see her contract renew for the next baseball season.

And she couldn’t be happier.

View from the press box, where Nancy Bea performs during each game.

View from the press box, where Nancy Bea performs during each game.

A Life Member of Local 47, Nancy initially wasn’t not much of a baseball fan (“Though I am now!” she laughs). She sought out the organist position at the encouragement of her husband, a die-hard Dodger fan, and their friend, former Dodger pitcher Tommy John. When she heard that stadium organist Helen Dell was retiring, her husband encouraged her to apply. “I’ve been here ever since,” Nancy Bea said. “They haven’t been able to get rid of me!”

Slowly but surely, over the years Nancy has grown a soft spot for baseball. “At first I didn’t think I’d want to sit at a baseball game every night,” Nancy Bea said. “I didn’t know it was going to be so much fun.”

Local 47 Secretary/Treasurer Gary Lasley and Live Performance Assistant to the President Diane Lauerman stopped by Dodger Stadium for a visit last season.

Local 47 Secretary/Treasurer Gary Lasley and Live Performance Assistant to the President Diane Lauerman stopped by Dodger Stadium for a visit last season.

A lot of that fun comes from not the sport, but the people. “A lot of it is the camaraderie we have here,” she says. “The other just goes along with it. You get to know some of the players. I went down several years ago and Matt Kemp said to me, ‘I always wanted to meet you!’ I said me? Why me? Juan (Uribe) was way out in center field—this is pre-game of course— and Matt yells to him, “Juan! Juan! Nancy Bea’s here!’ That was pretty neat.”

The Dodgers open the 2015 season at Dodger Stadium against the San Diego Padres on Opening Day, April 6.

– Originally published in the Spring 2015 Overture Magazine.

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