Kendrick Lamar closes Glastonbury in dramatic style, wearing diamond crown of thorns and declaring ‘Godspeed for women’s rights’

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The rapper gave an energetic and impassioned performance, including his final message (Picture: Reuters)

Kendrick Lamar’s debut performance at Glastonbury was delivered in electrifying style as the rapper brought the festival to a close wearing a custom crown of thorns, covered in 8,000 diamonds.

The US rapper, 35, who leaned heavily on theatrics with a group of backing dancers throughout, brought performance art to Worthy Farm with his blistering set.

Without the usual special guests, Kendrick whipped through his songs without too much pause for thought until near the end.

In a performance that was met with cheers from the crowd throughout, perhaps the biggest reaction of all came right at its climax when the headliner seemingly condemned the US Supreme Court’s overturning of Roe v Wade with his final words.

The votes of five US Supreme Court Justices on Friday ended America’s constitutional right to abortion by overturning the landmark ruling.

At the end of his 90-minute set, and with blood pouring down his face, Kendrick declared: ‘They judge me; they judge Christ. Godspeed for women’s rights’, repeating the phrase several times in a powerful moment before suddenly cutting short and leaving the stage.

Kendrick Lamar at Glastonbury
Kendrick rapped about women’s rights as blood poured down his face in the final moments of his set (Picture: BBC)
Kendrick Lamar at Glastonbury Festival 2022
He used dancers throughout his performance too, utilising the entirety of the Pyramid Stage (Picture: Samir Hussein/WireImage)
Kendrick Lamar at Glastonbury Festival 2022
Kendrick also had a screen showing related photographs and artwork throughout this set (Picture: Getty)

The Grammy winner joins several stars who platformed the issue during their sets at Glastonbury, including singer Lorde right before him, who declared ‘f**k the Supreme Court’ as she altered the lyrics to Secrets From a Girl (Who’s Seen It All) to include a short monologue.

Billie Eilish and Phoebe Bridgers also hit out at the ruling during their sets, while Olivia Rodrigo brought Lily Allen onstage as a surprise guest for a duet of her 2009 song F*** You, which the Good 4 U chart-topper dedicated to the US Supreme Court Justices who voted through the change in America’s constitutional law.

The BBC later confused fans by editing out Lily’s appearance in Olivia’s set during thier iPlayer highlights coverage, with the broadcaster saying it had been done ‘solely because of the strong language used throughout’.

Lorde at Glastonbury Festival 2022 - Day Five
Lorde appeared before Kendrick on the festival’s closing night, also sharing her displeasure over the US Supreme Court’s decision (Picture: Getty)
Olivia Rodrigo and Lily Allen at Glastonbury Festival 2022 - Day Four
Olivia Rodrigo had invited Lily Allen for a duet of F*** You as her way of speaking out over Roe v Wade (Picture: Joseph Okpako/WireImage)

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Kendrick had opened his set with United In Grief, before moving to hits including Money Trees, Backseat Freestyle, B**** Don’t Kill My Vibe, m.A.A.d city and King Kunta.

Making his Glastonbury debut with his Pyramid Stage performance on Sunday night, the headliner was initially announced for 2020 as part of the festival’s 50th anniversary, before two years of delays due to the pandemic.

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