Nicki Minaj may be known as a girl who likes to have a good time, but at a recent event in Los Angeles, she showed her personality also has a powerfully serious side.
Reading the poem “Still I Rise” by Maya Angelou, the chart-topper moved the crowd at “Shining a Light: A Concert for Progress on Race in America.” The full show will air Friday (Nov. 20) at 8 p.m. ET/PT on A&E, but the Minaj clip was leaked early.
Dressed in a shimmering gold and black dress, Minaj delivered Angelou’s beloved words from her 1978 book of poetry “And Still I Rise.” The message of Angelou’s words are meant to be a declaration of the black woman’s experiences and an emphasis of the strength she finds in herself and her community.
“Does my sassiness upset you?/Why are you beset with gloom?” Minaj recites. “Cause I walk like I’ve got oil wells/Pumping in my living room.”
Later, she delivers a line reading that elicits cheers from the crowd: “Does my sexiness upset you?/Does it come as a surprise/That I dance like I’ve got diamonds/At the meeting of my thighs?”
In addition to Minaj, also featured in the broadcast will be such names as Bruce Springsteen, Pharrell Williams, Nick Jonas and Alicia Keyes. Aiming to address racial conflicts, the money raised by the show will go to benefit United Way Worldwide.