*It was night full of memorable moments as First lady Michelle Obama and Beyoncé were among the celebrities, world leaders and performers joining the crowd of New Yorkers at the 2015 Global Citizen Festival on Saturday (Sept. 26).
The Associate Press reports that while FLOTUS was initially on hand via video to promote the 62 Million Girls education campaign for girls, she later walked on stage after Beyoncé introduced her following her performance.
“Let’s give it up for the amazing Beyoncé,” Mrs. Obama said. “I am thrilled to be here tonight … and honored to follow a woman who I admire and adore.”
During Obama’s remarks, she mentioned the 62 Million Girls campaign as she relayed her experience traveling the world and meeting with young women who have not had a chance to receive an education. From there, the first lady asked the audience to tweet photos of themselves with the hashtag #62MillionGirls and say what they learned in school.
“Right now 62 million girls are not in school … they deserve the same chances to get an education as my daughters and your daughters,” Obama said while pointing out that she learned how to “speak up” in school.
Held on the Great Lawn in New York’s Central Park, the Global Citizen Festival is dedicated to ending poverty around the world. The fourth annual event was available to fans, who scored free tickets by taking actions to end poverty on globalcitizen.org.
In addition to Mrs. Obama, the event, which aired on MSNBC, included an appearance from President Barack Obama via video and featured Vice President Joe Biden, Hugh Jackman, Bono and Leonardo DiCaprio.
Global Citizen Festival hosts included Stephen Colbert, Kerry Washington, Salma Hayek Pinault and Olivia Wilde, among and other celebrities, while Usher, Jason Sudeikis, Tori Kelly, Laverne Cox, Katie Holmes, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Bill and Melinda Gates and U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon attended the event.
Taking the stage to address the crowd, 18-year-old Pakistani activist Malala Yousafzai spoke passionately about fighting to ensure that all children receive an education.
“I want education to be the top priority because how can we end poverty … when we deny the right to education,” the Nobel Peace Prize winner said. “It’s not that there is lack of money in this world … we have billions and trillions of dollars, but where the money goes is military, it’s things that are useless and that are not useful to society.”
“It is a book and a pen that can change the life of a child — it’s not a gun,” Yousafzai added. “It was a gun that hit me on the left side of my forehead, it was a gun that hit my two friends, but it wasn’t a pen. But it was a pen (that) really helped us go forward in our lives.”
During her performance, the AP noted that Beyoncé churned out hits ranging from “Crazy In Love” and “Halo” to “Single Ladies” and a guitar-based version of “Drunk in Love,” with Ed Sheeran.
The former Destiny’s Child singer provided a musical moment with joining Pearl Jam frontman Eddie Vedder onstage. The group ended things on a high note with a noteworthy performance.
Beyoncé’s pairings with Vedder and Sheeran were one of a few talked about moments from the festival, which featured Sting performing with Common and Ariana Grande singing with Coldplay.
To see Mrs. Obama introducing and embracing Beyoncé at the festival, check out the video below: