Saturday Night Live Is Paying Tribute to Prince With a Special Retrospective
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As the world continues to mourn the tragic loss of Prince, Saturday Night Live is giving grieving fans an opportunity to relive those rare instances The Purple One deigned to grace Studio 8H with his presence.
E! News has learned that the Saturday, April 23 episode of the long-running NBC sketch comedy series will now be a special highlighting Prince’s during the show’s 41 year history. The episode, entitled “SNL Goodnight Sweet Prince” will take the place of a previously scheduled repeat episode. (Sorry, Peter Dinklage fans looking to relive his hosting hilarity. You’ll have to head to Hulu for that.) Knowing how hard it is to find video of Prince’s performances online (trust us, we looked), you may want to make sure to clear out some permanent space on your DVR for this one.
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Prince’s appearances on SNL were few and far between, but like the man himself, they were unforgettable. He first appeared as musical guest in on Feb. 21, 1981, where he performed “Party Up.” Though he appeared on the SNL 15th Anniversary special in September 1989, he wouldn’t return to the show as a musical guest until Feb. 4, 2006. During his second appearance, he thrilled the audience with “Fury” and “Beautiful, Loved and Blessed.” He followed that up with 2014’s unprecedented eight minute set, performing “Clouds,” “Marz,” and “Anotherlove” all at once, as opposed to the traditional two performances spaced throughout the show.
Of course, Prince was also routinely impersonated on SNL over the years, most notably during Fred Armisen‘s 11 year stint on the show whenever the show would trot out the popular “Prince Show” sketch, a send-up of the musician’s beloved eccentricities that featured Maya Rudolph as Prince’s co-host, Beyoncé.
In the hours after Prince’s tragic passing on Thursday, both MTV and VH1 began pre-empting programming in favor of wall-to-wall Prince music videos and repeat airings of his 1984 rock musical Purple Rain. VH1’s screening of the film will continue through Sunday.
Saturday Night Live airs Saturdays (duh) at 11:30 p.m. on NBC.
(E! and NBC are both part of the NBCUniversal family.)
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