Beyoncé has given an emotional performance at a memorial service for Kobe and Gianna Bryant.
The basketball legend and his daughter were killed in a helicopter crash on January 26, along with five other people.
A celebration of their lives is currently being held at the Staples Center – home to Bryant’s LA Lakers. Snoop Dogg, Kanye West, Jennifer Lopez, Alicia Keys were among those in attendance, alongside stars from the sports world, including NBA star Michael Jordan.
Beyoncé performed two songs at the service, ‘XO’ and ‘Halo’, backed for both by a choir and band dressed all in white. Before ‘XO’, she told the audience: “I’m here because I love Kobe, and this was one of his favourite songs.” Watch her performance below now.
— The Association on FOX (@TheAssociation) February 24, 2020
Bryant and Beyoncé were friends for years, with the sportsman appearing in Destiny’s Child‘s video for ‘Bug A Boo’ in 1999.
Days after his death, Beyoncé paid tribute to Bryant on Instagram, writing: “I will continue to diligently pray for your Queens. You are deeply missed beloved Kobe.”
Last week (February 16), Chance The Rapper also paid tribute to the late NBA legend during a half-time performance at this year’s all-star game. Performing at Chicago’s United Center, the rapper appeared backed by a gospel choir to play ‘I Was A Rock’ from beneath a screen showing footage of Bryant.
Before beginning the track, Chance said: “We pray for a day that will come when we get to see the place where there is no sunrise or sunset and the prince of peace will say, ‘Job well done’.”
The music industry reacted to Bryant’s death at the 2020 Grammys, which began shortly after the star’s death was confirmed. Alicia Keys and Boyz II Men performed an impromptu tribute to the athlete, while the pre-telecast ceremony began with a moment’s silence in his honour.