Brava! At tonight’s 2016 Academy Awards, Lady Gaga took the stage to sing her best original song–nominated hit, “Til It Happens to You.” And as per usual, the pop superstar killed it.
Dressed in a white Brandon Maxwell jumpsuit, the 29-year-old first-time Oscar nominee gave an emotional performance of the song written for The Hunting Ground, a documentary about campus rape.
Vice President Joe Biden introduced Gaga, taking the opportunity to promote the White House’s “It’s on Us” campaign against sexual assault. “Too many women and men on and off college campuses are still victims of sexual abuse. Let’s change the culture,” he told the crowd. “We must and we can change the culture so that abused women or men like the ones you will see tonight will never have to ask themselves, ‘What did I do?’ They did nothing wrong.”
“Til it happens to you, you don’t know how it feels,” Gaga belted while abuse survivors stood behind her. “Til It happens to you, you won’t know, it won’t be real.”
The singer teamed up with writing legend Diane Warren to pen the ballad, a heartbreaking interpretation of a sexual assault survivor’s experience. Last month, the American Horror Story: Hotel star opened up about her personal connection to the track.
“I just want to say thank you to everyone who has supported this film. It’s not only an important issue to me, but it’s an important issue to my family,” she said at 27th annual Producers Guild of America Awards on January 23. “Because when my father’s sister was in college, she was sexually assaulted, and then it caused her so much torment that it caused the lupus that she had to get so bad that she died.”
“My father was 16 and it affected my family really tremendously my whole life,” she added. “So this song means so much to me and so much to my parents.”
This is the second consecutive year that Gaga has graced the Oscars with her talent. At the 2015 ceremony, she stunned the audience with a jaw-dropping tribute to The Sound of Music.
Watch her performance of “Til It Happens to You” above.