Beyoncé began the memorial service honouring Kobe and Gianna “Gigi” Bryant, and their friends, in Los Angeles yesterday with an emotional performance of her songs ‘XO‘ and ‘Halo‘.
In a previously unannounced set, the singer took the stage backed by an orchestra and gospel choir to pay tribute to the late father-daughter duo, who passed away in a tragic helicopter crash last month.
“I’m here, because I love Kobe, and this was one of his favourite songs,” she told the audience, interrupting her song, ‘XO’. “So I want to start that over, but I want us to do it all together, and I want you to sing it so loud that they hear your love.”
Next, Beyoncé transitioned into a powerful gospel rendition of ‘Halo’. She wore a golden-hued suit and showed off purple nails and jewellery, a nod to the team colours of the L.A. Lakers, the NBA team Kobe called home.
JUST IN: "I'm here because I love Kobe."
Beyoncé is performing at the public memorial service for Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna ''Gigi'' Bryant. https://t.co/KBW9iGN8Z6
— ABC News (@ABC) February 24, 2020
A handful of tributes were scheduled for the Bryants at the Staples Center today, including a eulogy from Vanessa Bryant, who experienced the loss of her husband and teenage daughter.
“God knew they couldn’t be on this earth without each other. He had to bring them home to heaven together,” she said during her speech.
Kobe and Gigi were two of the nine victims who died in the helicopter crash in Calabasas, California, on January 26. They are survived by Vanessa, as well as the couple’s three other daughters, Natalia, 17, Bianka, 3, and Capri, 8 months.
This article originally appeared on Harper’s BAZAAR UK.
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