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Lizzo at the Atlantic Records BET Awards 2022 After Party

Source: Prince Williams / Getty

On Sept. 29, Lizzo made history while stopping in Washington, DC for her mega Special Tour. The Grammy-award winner was given the rare opportunity to play a 200-year-old crystal flute that once belonged to the former president, James Madison.

On Wednesday, the “About Damn Time” hitmaker took the stage to play the delicate woodwind which French flute maker Claude Laurent sent as a gift to James Madison in 1813. The Library of Congress had been in possession of the precious instrument for decades before allowing Lizzo to play it onstage. She is the first person to ever play the centuries-old flute.

A video posted to the singer’s Twitter account showed her carefully taking the flute from library staff before excitedly blowing into the instrument so fans could hear the legendary woodwind in action.

“B***h, I’m scared. “It’s crystal. It’s like playing out of a wine glass, b***h, so be patient,” she joked to crowd-goers before lightly blowing into the flute.

Lizzo reacts to playing the legendary flute onstage

The crowd burst into a sea of cheer as Lizzo stopped to admire the light fluttery notes that came out of the instrument. Then, Lizzo blew a few more mesmerizing notes out as she twerked and shimmied along to the magical instrument before returning it to the staff waiting offstage.

“B,***h, I just twerked and played James Madison’s crystal flute from the 1800s,” she said with excitement. “We just made history tonight!”

Earlier this week, Lizzo paid a visit to the Library of Congress to view their incredible collection of over 1,700 flutes, the largest in the world, according to the Library’s website. Lizzo had a chance to play with the “priceless heirloom” before taking the stage on Wednesday.

Here’s the history behind James Madison’s precious crystal flute

According to the Library, James Madison’s precious crystal flute is one of only two flutes that are made of crystal. It features a “silver joint” that has his name engraved, CNN noted.

Historians believe that the flute was saved from the White House fire in 1814, by first lady Dolley Madison. It was later passed down to Washington-based Dr. Cornelius Boyle, who allowed the U.S. National Museum to display the rare instrument in 1903. But it wasn’t long before Dayton C. Miller, a physician and woodwind enthusiast, purchased the flute. He later donated the rare woodwind and 1700 instruments to the Library of Congress in 1941.

This isn’t the first time Lizzo has had the opportunity to play with a valuable flute. In May, Lizzo made headlines after she played an 18K-gold flute on the red carpet at the Met Gala.


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