Lizzo plays James Madison’s crystal flute in a DC concert

The Emmy and three-time Grammy winner thanked the Library of Congress for “preserving our history and making history pretty damn cool” after playing the heirloom.

WASHINGTON — Music superstar Lizzo is no stranger to making headlines and making history. So it’s no wonder that she set another milestone during her 2022 “Special” tour.

On Tuesday night in Washington, DC, the three-time Grammy and Emmy winner interrupted her show to play a 200-year-old crystal flute owned by the Library of Congress and made for President James Madison.

Lizzo posted a video of the moment on Instagramand wrote, “YALL… THE LIBRARY OF CONGRESS LET ME PLAY THEIR HISTORICAL 200 YEAR OLD CRYSTAL FLUTE ON STAGE TONIGHT – NO ONE HAS EVER HEARD HOW IT SOUNDS… NOW YOU DO.”

she shared a second clip of the now viral moment, adding: “YEAH IM DOUBLE POSTING BUT I AM THE FIRST & ONLY PERSON TO PLAY THIS PRESIDENTIAL CRYSTAL FLUTE IT’S DURING A LEGACY – LIKE… AS A FLUTE PLAYER THIS IS ICONIC AND I WILL NEVER GO OVER FROM IT.” .”

After playing a few notes on the flute, made for President James Madison in 1813Lizzo returned the heirloom to a representative from the Library of Congress before turning back to the microphone.

Visibly delighted, Lizzo exclaimed, “We just made history tonight! Thank you to the Library of Congress for preserving our history and making history pretty darn cool. History is freaking cool folks.”

The Library of Congress said on Twitter later Tuesday night that Flute was “safe and sound” after being escorted home by Capitol Police.

According to the Library of Congress, the flute for Madison was made by Claude Laurent of Paris, one of 20 Laurent glass flutes in the library Dayton C Miller Collection.

Madison’s flute was made especially for him in honor of his second inauguration, and its silver knuckle is engraved with Madison’s name, title, and the year the flute was made.

How did this happen?

It takes a lot of planning to bring a centuries-old instrument to an arena packed with fans — and at least some of the planning was done through social media.

“The @librarycongress has the largest collection of flutes in the world with more than 1,800. You (including) Pres James Madison’s 1813 Crystal Flute. @lizzo we’d love for you to check them out and even play a few next time you’re in DC this week,” tweeted Congressional Librarian Carla Hayden, on Friday.

Lizzo’s answer? “I’M COMING CARLA! AND I’LL PLAY THE CRYSTAL FLUTE!!!!!”

The library explained on his website that Lizzo stopped by to practice the flute on Monday – after the curators determined it could be played without damage. While security details are being kept under wraps, the flute was transported to the concert in a special protective case under constant surveillance.

Though the process was complicated, the library said it was a “perfect moment” to highlight America’s cultural heritage for a new generation.

“The library’s vision is for all Americans to be connected to our holdings. We want people to see them,” the website explained.

https://www.kvue.com/article/news/entertainment-news/lizzo-crystal-flute/507-af494ba9-8d93-4c90-bb9c-844a69f7575b Lizzo plays James Madison’s crystal flute in a DC concert

Laura Coffey

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