Ariana Grande & *NSYNC
Photo: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images
Ariana Grande Shines At Coachella Alongside *NSYNC, Nicki Minaj, Diddy & Mase
Based on Ariana Grande's headlining Coachella performance last night, it is safe to say that the 25-year-old pop star is truly living her best life and grateful to be doing so. She not only became the fourth solo female artist to headline the iconic festival for its 20th annual event, she also was the youngest-ever headliner.
She seemed just as excited to be there as her many fans singing and dancing along during her no-holds-barred show-stopping set, which included very special guests *NSYNC, Nicki Minaj, Diddy and Mase, multiple glam costume changes for her and her backup dancers between their killer moves and several occasions of bombastic fireworks.
Grande came out to a cheering crowd, establishing her powerful stage presence and angelic voice with two songs from her GRAMMY-winning Sweetener, "raindrops (an angel cried)" into "God is a woman," wearing a maroon shiny satin puffy-shoulder number. Her talented crew of dancers, who also had plenty of costume changes to coordinate with hers, surrounded her during "God is a woman" as they danced on and around a large table for a dramatic Last Supper-evoking scene.
The crowd was captivated by the whole journey Grande took them on, singing along pretty much the entire set; swaying with the slower songs and dancing it out with her for the more upbeat bops. But the biggest moments for everyone, Ari included, was when the pop star shared her special moment on stage with some special friends.
Her first guests up were Lance Bass, Joey Fatone, Chris Kirkpatrick and JC Chasez of *NSYNC, who entered during "break up with your girlfriend, i'm bored," her song from thank u, next that samples their No Strings Attached track, "It Makes Me Ill."
When the almost-fully reunited boy band entered, even Grande couldn't contain her excitement; "Coachella, I've been waiting my whole life for this moment," she gushed. They jumped in, singing part of the 2000 track, followed by *NSYNC 1997 hit "Tearin' Up My Heart, complete with epic '90s boy band dance moves. As the group left the stage, Grande's mood reflected that of the crowd. "I could die now," she said.
Oft-collaborator and friend Minaj joined her on stage for two of Grande's big tracks she was featured on, "Side To Side" and "Bang Bang." While there were some technical difficulties during the segment of the show, they danced through it and stunned in their coordinating maroon looks.
In a lavender flowy sleeve outfit, Grande welcomed her final special guests, hip-hop legends Diddy and Mase. The trio sang Notorious B.I.G.'s GRAMMY-nominated classic "Mo Money Mo Problems," which, of course, features the other two rappers on Biggie's posthumous 1997 album Life After Death. As they finished, Diddy paid tribute to some of those we've lost too soon, shouting out Biggie, Tupac, Mac Miller and Nipsey Hussle.
Mase, Ariana Grande & Diddy | Photo: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images
Grande made sure to include all of her big hits and fan favorites, all in very big ways. For "7 rings" her and her dance crew shared the stage with a pink car that said "Arichella" spray painted across it. For "breathin," another crowd pleaser, she was joined by an orchestra who seemed to magically appear on stage as fireworks shot out up above the stage.
"This has been unbelievable. Love you, thank you!" Grande said, smiling at the crowd as she went into her final two songs. She then sang "no tears left to cry," a powerful moment, especially given it was the first song she released following—and as response to—the tragic events at her 2017 Manchester concert.
She closed out with her "thank u, next," her first No. 1 single, as the crowd sang along, extra loud, for one last time as more fireworks filled the sky.