Watch Aretha Franklin’s Star-Studded Funeral Live

Aretha Franklin will be laid to rest today.

The Queen of Soul will be entombed at Woodlawn Cemetery in her hometown of Detroit—the same place her father, Rev. C.L. Franklin; her brother, Cecil Franklin; her sisters, Carolyn Franklin and Erma Franklin, and her nephew, Thomas Garrett, were buried.

A funeral will be held at Greater Grace Temple before the burial. The Rev. Jasper Williams, Jr., pastor of Salem Baptist Church in Atlanta, will give Franklin’s eulogy and Bishop Charles H. Ellis, III, pastor of Greater Grace Temple, will serve as the officiant. Rev. Robert Smith, Jr., pastor of New Bethel Baptist Church in Detroit, will also serve as co-officiant.

The homegoing service is limited to family members, friends, dignitaries and special guests.

Several celebrities are expected to pay their respects to the legendary singer by performing musical tributes. Ariana GrandeStevie Wonder, Faith Hill, Ron Isley, Chaka Khan, Fantasia Barrino-Taylor and Jennifer Hudsonare among the artists set to perform in the star-studded service. Yolanda AdamsBishop Paul Morton, Pastor Shirley Caesar, The Clark Sisters, Jennifer Holliday, Tasha Cobbs-LeonardBishop Marvin Sapp, and The Williams Brothers are expected to perform, as well. 

Other artists include Vanessa Bell ArmstrongAudrey DuBois Harris and Alice McAllister Tillman. The Aretha Franklin Orchestra and the Aretha Franklin Celebration Choir will also perform.

In addition, the service will feature several prominent speakers, including former president Bill Clinton, former U.S. attorney general Eric Holder, pastor of The Potter’s House Bishop T.D. Jakes and president of the Rainbow P.U.S.H. Coalition Rev. Jesse JacksonClive DavisSmokey RobinsonTyler PerryAl Sharpton, Cicely Tyson, and Isaiah Thomas will speak, as well. 

Franklin’s family members are also expected to take part in the service. Her niece, Sabrina Owens, will provide the obituary and Franklin’s relatives—VaughnCristalVictorie and Jordan Franklin—will offer family reflections. In addition, Franklin’s son, Edward Franklin, will perform a musical tribute.

Several members of the state and city government are also expected to give personal remarks as will friends, colleagues and leaders of the church.

To watch Franklin’s funeral, see the live video.

Earlier this week, thousands of fans honored the “Natural Woman” artist by attending public viewings at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History.

Franklin passed away on Aug. 16 at the age of 76. She died of advance pancreatic cancer of the neuroendocrine type and was surrounded by family members and loved ones.

Over the course of her career, Franklin received several honors. She produced numerous chart-topping hits, including “Chain of Fools” and “Respect,” and received 18 Grammys, including the Recording Academy’s prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award. She was also the first woman inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and received the Presidential Medal of Freedom. In addition, she performed at several presidential inaugurations and the Super Bowl.


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