The Queen of Pop gave fans a sweet surprise at New York City’s famed Stonewall Inn on New Year’s Eve.
On Monday night, Madonna, 60, dropped in on a select crowd at the historic gay bar, where she sang an acoustic version of her 1989 hit “Like a Prayer” and a cover of Elvis Presley’s “Can’t Help Falling in Love.”
Son David Banda, 13, backed her on the acoustic guitar for the songs, which were captured on video and shared to YouTube.
Prior to the performance, Madonna — who has long been a supporter of the LGBTQ community — gave a speech about equal rights. According to Variety, Madonna has been named Stonewall’s ambassador for their 50th anniversary of the 1969 Stonewall riots, which launched the gay rights movement.
“I stand here proudly at the place where pride began, the legendary Stonewall Inn, on the birth of a new year,” Madonna said. “We come together tonight to celebrate 50 years of revolution.”
“If we truly look and we truly take the time to get to know one another, we would find that we all bleed the same color and we all need to love and be loved. As we stand here together tonight, let’s remember who we are fighting for and what we are fighting for. We are fighting for ourselves. We are fighting for each other. But truly and most importantly, what are you fighting for? We are fighting for love!”
She then asked the crowd to reflect on how they can bring “more love and peace into 2019.”
“In this new year, let’s commit to disarming people with unexpected acts of kindness,” she said. “Let’s be counterintuitive. Share what you know with someone you don’t agree with. Get outside your comfort zone. Let’s try to be more forgiving. Maybe we will find an opening to let the light come in. Let’s close up the distance between one human being and another. Are you ready to do that?”
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Madonna ended her note by paying tribute to those who had come before her. “I walk in the shadows of giants, the freedom fighters who have gone before me,” she said. “But let’s be giants ourselves. Let’s be giants and carry each other on our shoulders and into the new year, and into the future of love and understanding.”
After her speech, Madonna launched into her songs and asked the crowd to sing along. At one point, she hugged her son as they sang together.