Ariana Grande’s First Live Performance of “Thank U, Next” Was a Tip of the Hat to The First Wives Club
Ariana Grande’s first live performance of her single “Thank U, Next” was a tribute to one of her favorite films.
Ariana Grande is still taking her breakup in stride.
During an appearance on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Grande performed her latest single, “Thank U, Next,” a wise breakup anthem that the singer dropped just before her most recent ex, Pete Davidson, appeared on Saturday Night Live in early November.
As a bonus treat for her fans, the first performance of Grande’s chart-topping single also referenced one of her favorite movies: The First Wives Club. Starring Diane Keaton, Bette Midler, and Goldie Hawn, the 1996 film is a farce about three divorcées who join forces to get revenge on their ex-husbands.
While Grande’s “Thank U, Next” does not send a message to exact revenge on exes (it’s a gracious, non-shady bop that places the singer at the center of her own attention), her Ellen performance turned out to be a tip of the hat to one of The First Wives Club’s most iconic and empowering scenes. In the film, Midler, Hawn, and Keaton perform their own contemporary doo-wop rendition of Lesley Gore’s “You Don’t Own Me,” complete with sweeping choreography in an empty wedding hall, while dressed in all-white power suits. Onstage, while standing in between the backup singers Victoria Monet and Tayla Parx, Grande matched the choreography (and the all-white outfits) of the iconic First Wives Club scene to her own song.
And which characters from the ’90s rom-com might each member of this 2018 First Wives Club be? Although she placed herself at the center of the trio, the way Keaton is positioned during the “You Don’t Own Me” performance in the film, Grande posted a photo to Instagram before her performance in which she tagged herself as Hawn, Parx as Midler, and Monet as Keaton. If Tracy Oliver needs some casting suggestions for her upcoming television reboot of The First Wives Club, we know where she might be able to find a few ideas.
Related: Ariana Grande’s Exes Got a Preview of “Thank U, Next,” Including Pete Davidson