Lady Gaga’s One World: Together At Home online benefit concert saw names including Billie Eilish, Taylor Swift and Lizzo come together to raise money for healthcare workers on the frontline of the coronavirus crisis.
In lieu of nights out with friends or trips to the cinema, our weekends are now populated by an array of online activities. From virtual pub quizzes to online lectures and workout live streams, the coronavirus lockdown has provided us with a whole host of things to get involved with from the comfort of our own homes.
One of the standout online events on this weekend’s agenda was, of course, Lady Gaga’s One World: Together At Home benefit concert, which saw more than 100 celebrities perform from their own homes in a bid to raise money to support front-line workers during the coronavirus crisis.
Opening with footage of people under lockdown around the world applauding the efforts of healthcare workers, a caption read: “To all of our frontline healthcare workers, we are with you. Thank you for being there for us.”
In the UK, BBC One will be showing highlights of the concert – including new performances from British stars including Little Mix and Sir Tom Jones – at 7:15 tonight.
So without further ado, here’s our pick of the five unmissable moments to keep an eye out for.
1. Taylor Swift performing Soon You’ll Get Better live for the first time
Taylor Swift had previously said she would never perform Soon You’ll Get Better live because the subject matter – her mother’s cancer diagnosis – was too difficult, so her decision to perform for the One World: Together At Home concert was truly powerful.
The resulting performance was incredibly powerful. It’s clear to see that Swift herself was emotional – and the lyrics about doctors and hospitals were particularly poignant in light of the current situation.
2. Beyoncé making a powerful statement
Making a surprise appearance in the middle of the concert, Beyonce used her time on screen to praise the efforts of key workers on the frontline of the coronavirus pandemic – and highlighted the disproportionate impact Covid-19 is having on black Americans.
“Tonight we celebrate true heroes, those who are making the ultimate sacrifice to keep us all safe, fed, and healthy,” she said. “To the doctors, the nurses, and other health care workers who are away from their families, taking care of ours, we continue to pray for your safety. To those in the food industry, delivery workers, mail carriers, and sanitation employees, who are working so that we can be safe in our homes, we thank you for your selfless service.”
She continued: “Black Americans disproportionately belong to these essential parts of the workforce that do not have the luxury of working from home, and African American communities at large have been severely affected in this crisis. This virus is killing black people at an alarmingly high rate here in America.
“Please, protect yourselves. We are one family and we need you. We need your voices, your abilities, and your strength all over this world.”
3. Lizzo covering Sam Cooke’s A Change Is Gonna Come
Just when we thought we couldn’t love Lizzo anymore than we already do, her incredible cover of Sam Cooke’s classic song A Change Is Gonna Come stunned us all.
The stripped-down performance of Cooke’s song, which he wrote in the face of Civil Rights-era racism, was especially poignant after Beyoncé’s earlier address.
4. Jennifer Lopez looking as glam as ever
As if we expected anything different from the one and only JLo, the actress and singer absolutely nailed her performance of Barbara Streisand’s People – and looked incredible while doing it in her matching Barbara Streisand jumper.
The fairy light aesthetic she had going on in the background was also pretty amazing.
5. Christine And The Queens talking about mental health
Before performing her powerful song People I’ve Been Sad, French artist Christine And The Queens appealed to viewers to reach out to people online if they’re struggling with their mental health.
“It’s really strange,” she said. “It’s all about screens now and no human contact, and I know it can be draining emotionally. It’s the fourth week here in France and it’s been quite intense.
“I know it’s hard [but] don’t hesitate to reach out to people virtually if you feel down.”