Just days after releasing her brilliant new single break up anthem “thank u, next,” Ariana Grande brought the song to The Ellen Degeneres Show for a studiously choreographed performance that nonetheless took on an air of whimsy after Grande nearly tripped over one of her customarily giant heels. She was giggly from that point on, imbuing a song that is ultimately pretty heavy with a levity that matches its forward-looking optimism.
Otherwise, the performance was thematically about what you would expect, with the stage set up to look like a wedding attended only by Grande and her two dancers, dressed in all white and enjoying themselves with no men in sight.
“thank u, next,” of course, is Grande’s response of sorts to the recent tumult in her life, which included the death of her ex-boyfriend and close friend Mac Miller and her subsequent break up with fiancée Pete Davidson, with whom she had enjoyed (?) a short but explosive romance that dominated gossip media for what felt like most of the year. The song follows her recently released album Sweetener, which stood for a time as a document of happiness and bliss, though, frankly, “thank u, next” is much better than most of what is on that record. Grande will supposedly be releasing a new album soon.
Watch the Ellen performance below.
Update: It was a First Wives Club homage!