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Lady Gaga Performs Original Song, “Til It Happens to You” at 2016 Oscars

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Winthrop chapter.

“You say I’ll pull myself together, pull it together, you’ll be fine tell me it gets better, it gets better in time…”

On Sunday, February 28 the 2016 Oscars Award Show was live and it was iconic.

Leonardo DiCaprio won his first, well-deserved Oscar, Chris Rock made fun of Will Smith and his family for their Oscar drama, and the film Mad Max won 6 Academy Awards in one night. But, the most special part of the show was when Lady Gaga performed her hit song, Til It Happens To You.

With more than 1.5 million viewers, the stage was dimly lit as Gaga sung in an all-white pantsuit on a large white piano, and sang her heart out during it. The performer was nominated for an Oscar for the original song, and though she didn’t win, she still made a statement while singing it.

According to NPR MusicTil It Happens To You is a song produced and co-writen by Diane Warren and Lady Gaga for the 2015 documentary film, The Hunting Ground, which deals with campus rape in the United States.

The words in the song are so potent that if you listen to the song you can feel what Gaga was trying to express to the world. The song is heavy and embodies the pain that Gaga and other victims can relate to. It tells the story of people, both male and female, who have been abused physically and mentally. In 2014, the singer admitted that she had been raped when she was 19, which made the song, the performance and the message much more powerful. 

At the end of her performance, Gaga was joined on stage by a group of sexual assault survivors with mantras on their lower arms that said, “not your fault,” “survivor,” and “unbreakable.” Gaga and the survivors received a standing ovation while some of the A-listers actors clapped in tears.

“I was really, really having a hard time getting ready for this performance,” Gaga said according to ABC News. “I was on the floor, of my dressing room and my team was telling me to be strong and I was like, ‘Don’t you tell me how to feel!’ I was really losing it.”

Gaga’s performance was introduced by Vice President Joe Biden, who spoke about the White House “It’s On Us” campaign, which addresses sexual assault in America.

Biden said, “Tonight, I’m asking you to join millions of Americans including me, President Obama, the thousands of students I’ve met on college campuses, and the artists here tonight, to take the pledge, a pledge that says I will intervene in situations when consent has not or cannot be given. Let’s change the culture.”

Earlier this week, Gaga voiced her support of pop star Kesha, who is currently involved in a legal battle with Sony.

This performance was necessary to uplift survivors to know that they matter and that they can triumph over any situation, even something as difficult to fathom as rape.  

Gaga shined bright on last Sunday, and really spoke out to the world about this heavy and very relevant topic. 

Watch the Oscars performance Til It Happens To You here!

If you or someone you know has been sexually assaulted and needs help, call 800.656.HOPE (4673) to be connected with a trained staff member from a sexual assault service provider in your area.

I am a Mass Communications major at Winthrop University with a minor in theatre. I enjoy reading, writing, singing, blogging, traveling, photography and all things newsworthy(media, fashion and entertainment). I also love having fun and doing quality professional work. I enjoy volunteering with various organizations one in particular SOAR. A fun fact about myself is that I enjoy figure-skating and I use to take piano lessons. I truly enjoy being in the company of my family, friends and church family and I love helping others. I am excited about this opportunity, as I am looking forward to learning and passing it on.
Winthrop University is a small, liberal arts college in Rock Hill, SC.