Two “American Idol” alumni are among the celebrities who are set to perform at the private funeral of the late Aretha Franklin from August 30-31, 2018 in Detroit, Michigan. They are Fantasia Barrino-Taylor, 34, who is mononymously known as Fantasia, and Jennifer Hudson, 36.
Both Fantasia and Hudson competed in the third season of “American Idol” in 2004. The former emerged as the grand winner while the latter placed seventh.
Upon winning “American Idol,” Fantasia released her debut single “I Believe,” which debut on the Billboard Hot 100 at number one. Her debut album “Free Yourself” received three nominations at the Grammy Awards in 2006.
Also in 2006, Hudson made her film debut in “Dreamgirls.” She received the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for the romantic musical drama film, which also starred Beyonce Knowles, Jamie Foxx, Eddie Murphy, Danny Glover, Anika Noni Rose and Keith Robinson.
Hudson was signed by producer Clive Davis to Arista Records after her “American Idol” elimination. Co-released by the record label, her self-titled debut album won the Grammy Award for Best R&B Album in 2008.
Earlier this year, it was announced that Hudson is playing Franklin in an upcoming biopic. Davis told E! News that the late “Respect” singer had “anointed” the Academy Award winner.
After a long battle with pancreatic cancer, Franklin died on August 16, 2018 in her house in Riverfront Towers, Detroit. She was 76.
Also performing at Franklin’s funeral are Stevie Wonder, Faith Hill, Ronald Isley, Chaka Khan, Yolanda Adams, Shirley Caesar, Jennifer Holiday, Tasha Cobbs-Leonard, Marvin Sapp, Vanessa Bell Armstrong, Audrey DuBois Harris, Alice McAllister Tillman, Edward Franklin, The Williams Brothers and The Clark Sisters, Just Jared reported. The Aretha Franklin Orchestra and the Aretha Franklin Celebration Choir will be performing, as well.
From 1961 to 2014, Aretha released 37 studio albums. She is known for the songs “I Say a Little Prayer,” “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman,” “I Never Loved a Man (The Way I Love You),” “Think,” “Chain of Fools” and “Respect,” among others.
Watch Aretha singing “Respect” here: