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"Singing our National Anthem for the American People is my honor. I will sing during a ceremony, a transition, a moment of change—between POTUS 45 and 46," she tweeted minutes before her rendition

By Karen Mizoguchi and Tomás Mier
January 20, 2021 11:50 AM
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Wearing a navy Schiaparelli fitted jacket featuring a symbolic golden pin of a dove carrying an olive branch and red silk ballgown, Lady Gaga displayed her vocal talents and shared a message of peace in front of incoming President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris, as well as millions who watched the historic inauguration ceremony.

Accompanied by the Marine band on Wednesday, Gaga, 34, sang "The Star-Spangled Banner" on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol for the "America United"-themed ceremony celebrating Biden, 78, and Harris, 56.

"Singing our National Anthem for the American People is my honor. I will sing during a ceremony, a transition, a moment of change — between POTUS 45 and 46. For me, this has great meaning," she tweeted minutes ahead of her performance.

"My intention is to acknowledge our past, be healing for our present, and passionate for a future where we work together lovingly," she added. "I will sing to the hearts of all people who live on this land. Respectfully and kindly, Lady Gaga."

WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 20: Lady Gaga arrives to sing the National Anthem at the inauguration of U.S. President-elect Joe Biden
Lady Gaga
| Credit: Rob Carr/Getty
Lady Gaga sings the National Anthem at the inauguration of U.S. President-elect Joe Biden on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol on January 20, 2021 in Washington, DC
Lady Gaga
| Credit: Rob Carr/Getty

Following her rendition, Andrea Day — the first Black female firefighter to serve as captain in the South Fulton, Georgia's Fire Rescue Department — recited the Pledge of Allegiance.

Hall is also the President of the International Association of Firefighters Local 3920 and a career firefighter with 28 years of dedicated service.

As she walked off the West front of the Capitol building, Gaga was captured greeting and embracing former President Barack Obama. Obama and Gaga crossed paths during his first term as re-election campaign in 2011, when she advocated for anti-bullying.

Lady Gaga Barack Obama
Lady Gaga and Barack Obama
| Credit: Alex Wong/Getty
Lady Gaga sings the National Anthem at the inauguration of U.S. President-elect Joe Biden on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol on January 20, 2021 in Washington, DC
Lady Gaga
| Credit: Win McNamee/Getty

The 11-time Grammy winner is no stranger to performing the national anthem: She was revered for her rendition prior to the kick-off of Super Bowl 50 in 2016 when the Denver Broncos defeated the Carolina Panthers.

Biden's embrace by Hollywood Democrats is in stark contrast to his predecessor, who booked America's Got Talent star Jackie Evancho to sing the national anthem for his January 2017 inauguration.

Lady Gaga sings the National Anthem at the inauguration of U.S. President-elect Joe Biden on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol on January 20, 2021 in Washington, DC
Lady Gaga
| Credit: Win McNamee/Getty

Biden previously called Gaga "a great friend" when the pair teamed up for a PSA in October 2017 to raise awareness for the "It's on Us" campaign, which was launched in 2014 by Biden and former President Barack Obama to end sexual assault on college campuses.

On Wednesday, Gaga will be among the few to take part in Biden's swearing-in ceremony in person. In addition to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic restricting attendance, heightened security concerns following the Jan. 6 riots on the Capitol prevented the public from congregating in Washington D.C.

Jennifer Lopez and Garth Brooks will also perform at the inauguration.

Gaga and Lopez, 51, were both vocal advocates of the Biden-Harris ticket, with Gaga hitting the campaign trail and performing "Shallow" and "You and I" at Biden's final rally in Pittsburgh on the eve of the 2020 presidential election. Lopez and her fiancé Alex Rodriguez endorsed Biden during a virtual chat in October 2020.

"I pray tomorrow will be a day of peace for all Americans. A day for love, not hatred. A day for acceptance not fear," wrote Gaga on Instagram the day before inauguration. "A day for dreaming of our future joy as a country. A dream that is non-violent, a dream that provides safety for our souls. Love, from the Capitol 🇺🇸."

Joe Biden, Lady Gaga
President Joe Biden and Lady Gaga
| Credit: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Meanwhile, country star Brooks, who is a Republican, said he was personally asked by the new first lady, Dr. Jill Biden to perform. "This is not a political statement — this is a statement of unity," he recently said on a Zoom call with reporters. "Excited, nervous, all the good things because this is history. It's an honor to get to serve. This is kind of how I get to serve this country. Our father served as a United States Marine; in the Korean War, we had brothers who served in the Air Force and the Army … this is my chance to get to serve. It's been an honor."

Brooks, 58, added, "I've played for every president there is, since Carter, with the exception of Reagan. So I've got to sit and have an audience with these people, including President Trump as well. This is an honor for me to get to serve. I got to serve the Clinton Administration with the Concert of the Century, the Bush Administration with Points of Light … it's one of the things that, if my family is around, no matter who the president-elect is, it's an honor to be asked."

Following Biden's inaugural speech, 22-year-old Amanda Gorman, the country's first-elect youth poet laureate, will recite an original poem. Gorman will be the youngest poet to read at an Inauguration Day ceremony.

In the announcement of Inauguration Day performers, Tony Allen, the head of the Presidential Inaugural Committee, said: "They represent one clear picture of the grand diversity of our great nation and will help honor and celebrate the time-honored traditions of the presidential inauguration as President-elect Biden and Vice President-elect Harris take the oath of office on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol."

Biden will be the oldest person sworn in as president and the second Catholic to hold the office. Meanwhile, Harris will be the first woman, first Black person and first person of Indian descent to be elected as vice president.