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Beyonce drew a loud cheer at the inauguration Monday even before her impressive rendition of the national anthem. But in the role she played four years ago singing for the president and first lady at the inaugural ball was her “Dreamgirls” co-star Jennifer Hudson.
If President Barack Obama’s first inaugural theme seemed to be summed up by Beyonce’s “At Last,” this time it was Hudson’s version of Al Green’s “Let’s Stay Together.” The “American Idol” alum sang the soul classic for the couple’s first dance.
The president set up the fine moment by giving props to his better half.
“I’m just lucky to have her,” he said in a brief speech. “I said today over at the lunch over at Congress that some may dispute the quality of our president, but nobody disputes the quality of our first lady. Ladies and gentlemen, my better half — and my dance partner, Michelle Obama.”
For Vice President Joe Biden’s first dance with Dr. Jill Biden, actor-singer Jamie Foxx serenaded with Ray Charles’ “I Can’t Stop Loving You.”
Hudson and Foxx were among the entertainers at Monday night’s inaugural balls, joined by Stevie Wonder, Brad Paisley and Alicia Keys, who modified her hit “Girl on Fire” to sing “He’s living in a world and it’s on fire. Filled with catastrophe, but he knows he can find a way.”
The tweaked song also squeezed in a reference to the first lady.
“Everybody stares as he goes by, cause they can see the flame [inaudible] his eyes. Watch him as he’s lighting up the night. Everybody knows that Michelle is his girl, together they run the world…
“He’s the president and he’s on fire… Obama’s on fire. Obama’s on fire.”
The crowd at the official Inaugural Ball also joined in with the Grammy-nominated fun. anthem “We Are Young.”