Friday, September 30, 2022

Lizzo made headlines and history playing James Madison's crystal flute after winning an Emmy

Lizzo, Time's 2019 Entertainer of the Year, made headlines and history this week when she played James Madison's crystal flute, first at the Library of Congress and again at her concert. The Washington Post featured her playing at both venues in Lizzo plays James Madison's flute at Library of Congress.

Lizzo played various collectible flutes in the Reading Room and flute vault at the Library of Congress's Great Hall on Sept. 26, including former president James Madison's crystal flute. She then dazzled a massive audience at Capitol One Arena that evening, revealing she had Madison's flute on stage with her.
This was the first time I'd heard Lizzo play any flute, let alone President Madison's crystal flute, and I was impressed. She's both expressive and technically proficient, a good combination for any musician.

Inside Edition explained more of instruments history in Lizzo Makes History Playing James Madison’s Crystal Flute.

Lizzo played a priceless 200-year-old flute at her Washington D.C. concert. She's now the first person in two centuries to perform with the crystal flute once owned by former President James Madison. At the concert, she gave a short history lesson about the historic flute. When the British burned down the White House during the War of 1812, the only two items that were saved was a portrait of George Washington and the crystal flute.
I'd heard about Dolly Madison saving Washington's portrait, but I only learned about the flute being rescued today. That written, an article on the Library of Congress website expresses some uncertainty about the claim, although it still finds the story likely to be true.

I'm sharing one more video about this story as WUSA9 explains How the Library of Congress made Lizzo's flute performance happen.

The renowned flutist gave Tuesday's audience at her Capitol One Arena performance quite the treat, when she surprised everyone by performing on a historical 200-year-old crystal flute. According to the Library of Congress, a French fluter made the ornate instrument in 1813 specifically for President James Madison in honor of his second inauguration.
I also didn't know that the Library of Congress had a flute vault until today. It's always a good day when I learn something new, and today I learned two new things.

I told my readers yesterday that I would return to television. Follow over the jump as I keep that promise by reporting on "Lizzo's Watch Out for the Big Grrrls" winning three Emmy Awards, including one for Lizzo herself.

I'm going to embarrass myself by revisiting the winning categories for "Lizzo's Watch Out for the Big Grrrls" from 'RuPaul's Drag Race' leads competition shows with eight nominations plus three more for its spinoffs.
Outstanding Competition Program
The Amazing Race
Lizzo's Watch Out for the Big Grrrls (Prime Video)
Nailed It! (Netflix)
RuPaul's Drag Race (VH1)
Top Chef (Bravo)
The Voice (NBC)
I'm going to update what I wrote last year. "RuPaul's Drag Race" has won this award four years in a row, so I consider it the favorite on that criterion as well as its leading in nominations among competition programs with eight for the main show as well as one each for "RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars," "RuPaul's Drag Race Whatcha Packin' with Michelle Visage," and "RuPaul's Drag Race: Untucked." Its closest competition is "Lizzo's Watch Out for the Big Grrrls" with six nominations, which replaced "Dancing with the Stars" in this category, but the latter still earned three nominations at the Creative Arts Emmy Awards. Congratulations, Lizzo, Time's 2019 Entertainer of the Year. "Top Chef" almost ties Lizzo's show with five nominations for the show proper and a sixth for spinoff "Top Chef: Last Chance Kitchen." The rest of the field consists of "The Voice" with three nominations, followed by "The Amazing Race" and "Nailed It!" each with two.
While I expected "RuPaul's Drag Race" to win again, I did at least consider "Lizzo's Watch Out for the Big Grrrls" to be serious competition. Watch Competition Program: 74th Emmy Awards to see Lizzo accept her Emmy.

Lizzo accepts the Emmy for Competition Program for Lizzo's Watch Out For The Big Grrrls at the 74th Emmy Awards.
That was an emotional acceptance speech!

The rest of the show's producers took their turn to speak in Lizzo's Watch Out for the Big Grrrls: 74th Emmy Awards Winnerview.

The team from Lizzo's Watch Out for the Big Grrrls talk to Marc Istook backstage at the 74th Emmy Awards after winning the Emmy for Outstanding Competition Series.
They thought "RuPaul's Drag Race" would likely win this, too. Just the same, surprise and congratulations!

I was less surprised in the next category.
Outstanding Directing for a Reality Program
Cheer: "Daytona Pt. 2: If the Judges Disagree" – Greg Whiteley (Netflix)
Lizzo's Watch Out for the Big Grrrls: "Naked" – Nneka Onuorah (Prime Video)
Queer Eye: "Angel Gets Her Wings" – Aaron Krummel (Netflix)
RuPaul's Drag Race: "Moulin Ru: The Rusical" – Nick Murray (VH1)
Top Chef: "Freedmen's Town" – Ari Boles (Bravo)
This field includes a rematch of two years ago, where "Cheer" beat "RuPaul's Drag Race." Without "Cheer," "RuPaul's Drag Race" won again last year. Let's see who wins this year.
It's possible I underestimated "Lizzo's Watch Out for the Big Grrrls"...Now I have a pick to upset the previous winners.
And it happened. Watch Emmys 2022 backstage: Nneka Onuorah wins for directing 'Lizzo's Watch Out for the Big Grrrls' from Gold Derby.

'Lizzo's Watch Out for the Big Grrrls' director Nneka Onuorah wins Best Directing for a Reality Program. "I appreciate Amazon for allowing me the creative freedom." Emmy winners meet the media backstage for a Q&A in the Creative Arts press room.
As the producers pointed out in their interview, this show could have been made a decade ago, but the opportunity didn't open up until now. Thank you Amazon for walking the walk on diversity and representation to make this show possible and congratulations to Nneka Onuorah on her win!

Outstanding Picture Editing for a Structured Reality or Competition Program
Lizzo's Watch Out for the Big Grrrls: "Naked" – Deidre Panziera, Hannah Carpenter, Brian Murphy, and Jeanie Phillips (Prime Video)
Queer Eye: "Angel Gets Her Wings" – Nova Taylor and Sean Gill (Netflix)
RuPaul's Drag Race: "Big Opening #1" – Jamie Martin, Paul Cross, Ryan Mallick, and Michael Roha (VH1)
RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars: "Halftime Headliners" – Michael Lynn Deis, Mary DeChambres, Katherine Griffin, Laurel Mick Ostrander, and Michael Roha (Paramount+)
Top Chef: "Restaurant Wars" – Steve Lichtenstein, Ericka Concha, Tim Daniel, George Dybas, Eric Lambert, Anthony Rivard, Jay Rogers, Sarah Goff, Matt Reynolds, and Clark Vogeler (Bravo)
"RuPaul's Drag Race" won this award the past two years, but "Queer Eye" has taken home the statuette twice before, so I think the two shows are the front runners with "RuPaul's Drag Race" favored.
Here "RuPaul's Drag Race" is competing directly against its spinoff "RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars." Either one would be a win for the franchise.
But none of "Queer Eye," "RuPaul's Drag Race," or "RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars" won. Instead, it was "Lizzo's Watch Out for the Big Grrrls." Oops on my part as I blew the call and congratulations to "Lizzo's Watch Out for the Big Grrrls" for the upset win.

By the way, don't feel too sorry for "Queer Eye" and "RuPaul's Drag Race." Both took home Emmys, which I will probably cover on National Coming Out Day. Stay tuned.

Previous posts about the 2022 Emmy Awards

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