Authorities cut short Saturday’s night’s (Aug 21) We Love NYC: The Homecoming Concert due to a lightning storm ahead of Hurricane Henri. Poor Barry Manilow’s set was interrupted as he sang “Can’t Smile Without You.” And after two hours the concert was canceled altogether.
However, Jennifer Hudson managed to make it on to the Central Park stage before the skies opened, to perform the opera classic, Nessun Dorma.
Some may wonder why the American Idol alum and former The Voice coach didn’t perform a song recorded by Aretha Franklin. The Oscar and Grammy winning singer stars in the Aretha biopic, “Respect,” out now in theaters.
However, the song has a major connection to the late singer! In 1998. Aretha stepped in for an ailing Pavarotti on the Grammy telecast at the very last moment. She then proceeded to blow everyone away with her operatic rendition of Nessun Dorma. She also sang the song for Pope Francis in 2015.
As far as the New York City concert is concerned, authorities halted the show before Bruce Springsteen, Paul Simon, Elvis Costello, The Killers and Patti Smith were able to take the stage. CNN broadcast the concert live, along with interviews by host Anderson Cooper.