Andra Day and Common uplift the Oscars crowd with a powerful performance of ‘Stand Up For Something.’ They were joined on stage by 10 activists as they paid tribute to Parkland shooting victims and more.
Andra Day, 33, and Common, 45, took the Oscars stage for a powerful performance at the 90th annual awards show on March 4. Common rapped in support of the Parkland shooting victims, Dreamers, immigrants, and “sh-thole countries” while Day sang her heart out. The artists stunned viewers with their uplifting duet of the Oscar-nominated song, “Stand Up for Something” from Marshall, the Thurgood Marshall biopic starring Black Panther‘s Chadwick Boseman. The Chicago rapper and the California singer were joined on stage by 10 activists, who all stand up for something. The artists personally invited each individual to join them during their moving performance. The activists included Alice Brown Otter (Standing Rock Youth Council); Bana Alabed (author and Syrian refugee); Bryan Stevenson (Equal Justice Initiative); Cecile Richards (Planned Parenthood Action Fund); Dolores Huerta (Dolores Huerta Foundation, United Farm Workers of America); Janet Mock (#GirlsLikeUs), José Andrés (ThinkFoodGroup); Nicole Hockley (Sandy Hook Promise); Patrisse Cullors (Black Lives Matter); and Tarana Burke (Me Too).
Common started the performance with a short, but strong passage: “Immigrants get the benefits / Let’s put up monuments for the feminists / “Tell the NRA, they’re in God’s way / And to the people of Parland, we say ‘Ase’/Sentiments for the people from Africa / Haiti to Puerto Rico.” Later on in the song, he rapped a verse that mentioned Donald Trump and the recent take-a-knee NFL protests. “A knee we take for our soul’s sake… A president, we chose from hate/He don’t control our fate because God is great.”
The Oscars stage wasn’t the first time Andra Day and Common performed “Stand Up For Something” together. They entertained NBA All-Star Weekend viewers before the Verizon Slam Dunk Contest during State Farm All-Star Saturday Night on Feb. 17, 2018 at Staples Center in Los Angeles.
There are five songs nominated for Best Original Song at the 90th annual Academy Awards, and they will all be performed live at the show at the Dolby Theater in Los Angeles. — Mary J. Blige, who is nominated for Best Supporting Actress category for her role as Florence Jackson in the Netflix drama “Mudbound” — will sing “Mighty River” from the movie’s soundtrack; Miguel, Gael Garcia Bernal, and Natalia Lafourcade will join forces to perform “Remember Me” from Coco; Kerala Settle will sing “This Is Me” from The Greatest Showman; and Sufjan Stevens will reprise “Mystery of Love” from Call Me By Your Name.