“The national anthem is a complicated tune… and it was a complicated time,” Lady Gaga told Stephen Colbert.
Stop by The late show On Tuesday evening (November 23), Gaga offered a unique behind-the-scenes look at her involvement in a landmark endeavor: singing the national anthem during the inauguration of President Joe Biden. Still, it wasn’t an entirely normal inauguration – it took place on the capital steps just 14 days after supporters of President Donald Trump stormed the capital in an attempt to overturn the results. 2020 election officials.
“It was one of the proudest moments I have ever experienced as a musician and performer,” said Gaga. “Every artist has something meaningful to them about why they do what they do – for me, I like to make audiences smile. I had two minutes and thirty seconds to speak to the whole world, and I thought maybe this would be a good opportunity to sing for Everybody– not just to fans of President Biden and the people who voted for him, but the world. “
With that in mind, Gaga and her musical director, Michael Bearden (who wrote the arrangement used that day), felt it would be appropriate to give the line a little more oomph. “And the flag was still there”—But things didn’t happen exactly as expected…
“What’s funny about this moment, besides being moving and powerful, is that, believe it or not, they actually moved the flag,” Gaga explained. “I was out the night before for the capital and it was… you know, the energy was powerful. It was tense because there had been such violence the week before… I went to my rehearsal and planned to find the flag to signal it when I sang that part, but what I did not know is that they were going to move the flag. When I got there I started to turn around and I was like, “Oh girl, keep spinning and maybe it will show.” It turns out they always kept the flag up on this beautiful day… and I found it! “
Perhaps one of the biggest revelations of the interview, however, was the fact that Gaga’s dress – a regal-looking gown with a black top and a flowing red skirt – was bulletproof.
“There was a bulletproof vest sewn into the dress… it was a scary time in this country,” the 35-year-old singer said. “I care a lot about my family and, as a performer, I understand that I put myself in all kinds of dangerous situations to do what I love. So I did it for myself and for my family too, so that my mom, dad and sister could feel confident.
Continuing, she pointed out how the dress was inspired by her appreciation of Enlightenment idealism: “This dress is a Schiaparelli dress, an Italian designer, and everything I wore that day was inspired by the Italian and French Revolution. I felt like this day was a “revolution” for this country and a real opportunity for us to look beyond the resistance and envision a time when we can be kinder and braver as a nation. , as a people.
Beyond that, Gaga spoke with Colbert about his activism, his love for the LGBT community, and more. Watch the interview HERE and check out his performance of “The Star-Spangled Banner” below:
Photo by David Livingston / Getty Images for Fashion Media