Last night, Ariana Grande headlined the final night of Coachella. Grande was reportedly a last-minute replacement for would-be headliner Kanye West, but she still did everything in her power to make her set a big, special occasion. And while Grande might not have a grand, sweeping Beyoncé-style spectacle in her, she is arguably the biggest pop star in the world right now. She has connections, and she used them. During her set last night, she included guest appearances from some very famous people.
The big climax of Grande’s set arrived early in the night. It came when she brought 80% of *NSYNC to the stage. (The one *NSYNC member who didn’t take part was Justin Timberlake. Timberlake was also once slated to headline this year’s Coachella, but Timberlake recently canceled a bunch of tour dates because of bruised vocal chords, so he has a good excuse for not being there.)
On her recent hit “Break Up With Your Girlfriend, I’m Bored,” Grande sampled “It Makes Me Ill,” a deep cut from the massive 2000 album No Strings Attached. (It came out when Grande was six.) When Grande sang “Break Up With Your Girlfriend, I’m Bored” last night, she brought he iconic boy band to the stage, and she sang “It Makes Me Ill” and the 1997 monster hit “Tearin’ Up My Heart” with them.
— tati (@strippedjt) April 15, 2019
— *NSYNC (@NSYNC) April 15, 2019
Later on, Grande brought out her friend and frequent collaborator Nicki Minaj, and they performed the first track that they recorded together, Jessie J’s 2014 hit “Bang Bang.” (Jessie J did not join them.) Some sort of technical issue was messing with their performance, and they couldn’t hear each other, but they muddled through it anyway.
— idk (@idkbuddy69) April 15, 2019
Later in the show, there was an interlude where the speakers played a recording of Grande covering Frank Ocean’s Blond song “Close To You.”
Ariana Grande covered Frank Ocean’s Close To You and I’m in tears y’all. TEARS. pic.twitter.com/AKAXAYTo9I
— yee (and i cant stress this enough) HAW (@eliellopez14) April 15, 2019
And for her final big surprise of the evening, Grande brought out Diddy and Mase, joining them to perform “Mo Money Mo Problems,” which Diddy dedicated to the Notorious BIG, Tupac Shakur, Nipsey Hussle, and Grande’s late ex Mac Miller.
— The Pop Hub Poland (@ThePopHubPL2) April 15, 2019
Grande will once again take the Coachella stage next weekend. Time will tell if she’ll do the same show again or if she’ll bring some different surprises.