Saturday night’s Humane Society Gala was studded with animal-lovin’ stars, but Kesha’s performance of “Til It Happens to You” stole the show.
Kesha’s ongoing struggle with Sony and producer Dr. Luke, whom she sued for sexual assault in 2014, gave the song a chilling resonance. Lady Gaga and Diane Warren co-wrote the song for the documentary The Hunting Ground, a wrenching and often infuriating film about sex abuse on college campuses across the country. Gaga performed the song, which was nominated for an Oscar, alongside the very survivors featured in the doc; it’s inspired tons of sexual abuse survivors to speak frankly about their experiences, including Lady Gaga herself.
“I want to dedicate this song to every man, woman, child, and animal that has ever been abused,” Kesha said, before launching into a rendition of the song. Kesha, who was understandably emotional during her performance, received a standing ovation from the audience.