Taylor Swift Says 'Expect the Unexpected, but Celebrate Anyway' in Virtual Commencement Speech
Taylor Swift is sending her best wishes to the 2020 graduates as part of YouTube's "Dear Class of 2020" virtual commencement.
The "Lover" singer, 30, made a brief appearance on the livestream program Sunday and told the graduates — whose in-person ceremonies were canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic — that she could relate to them based on her own high school graduation experience.
"I wanted to say congratulations to all the graduates this year," Swift began. "I know this is probably not the graduation you thought you were going to be having. I relate to that in a lot of ways. When I was younger I used to fantasize about high school graduation and being with all of your friends and cap and gown and the whole thing."
"Then when I got to that point in my life where graduation was coming up, I found myself on a radio tour with my mom in rental cars, sitting on the floors of airports, and I ended up being mailed my diploma," the Grammy winner added. "So it wasn’t exactly what I pictured, but I was still really proud of it.
"And I guess one good lesson to come from it is expect the unexpected, but celebrate anyway," Swift said. "I’m so proud of you guys and I hope that you have a wonderful time and are really proud of yourselves.”
The "Dear Class of 2020" virtual event features appearances from celebrities like Swift, Beyoncé, Lady Gaga, Barack and Michelle Obama, Dwyane Wade, Tom Brady, and the casts of Schitt’s Creek and Euphoria.
YouTube said the event — which is spanning for more than four hours — will “center around the timely themes of hope, resilience and camaraderie, especially given the recent social justice movement.”
Additional famous faces providing remarks on the show include BTS, Malala Yousafzai, former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, Alphabet and Google CEO Sundar Pichai and former Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates.
Various stars will also come together for special performances during the event, including a reading of the Maya Angelou poem “Still I Rise” by Tracee Ellis Ross, Yara Shahidi, Kelly Rowland, Shonda Rhimes, Misty Copeland and Janelle Monáe.
Rounding out the celebs involved include Billie Eilish, Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson, Michael B. Jordan, Camila Mendes, John Mulaney, Chris Pine, Kerry Washington, Gabrielle Union, Justin Timberlake, Demi Lovato, Russell Wilson and Ciara, and Seth Rogen.