Ariana Grande’s scheduled appearance on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon was supposed to include a comedy sketch, but following the death of Aretha Franklin on Thursday morning, the show asked her to perform a tribute to the late icon. Ariana initially protested, according to TMZ, but decided to go ahead with the performance.
Ariana opened the show with Aretha’s “Natural Woman” alongside the Roots, and by the end of the song, Ariana was in tears. The audience gave Ariana a standing ovation.
Aretha Franklin passed away on Thursday morning in Detroit, at the age of 76. Ariana posted to Instagram earlier in the day remembering the queen of soul, writing “forever” on a clip of Aretha singing, and sharing a photo of the two.