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Beyoncé & Kendrick Lamar Slay, Prince Tributes Make Magic at BET Awards

Beyoncé & Kendrick Lamar Slay, Prince Tributes Make Magic at BET Awards

Us magazine reports Beyoncé and Kendrick Lamar shocked viewers of Sunday's BET Awards, opening the show with a powerful take on her song "Freedom" from her visual album "Lemonade."

Looking stunning in braids, Beyoncé — barefoot! — performed the number alongside Lamar in a giant lap pool reminiscent of the slippery-when-wet catwalk she uses on her current Formation world tour.

Lamar's rap touched on over-incarceration in the U.S., imploring the country to, "Open correctional gates in higher desert/Open our mind as we cast away oppression."

Watch the whole number here!

The other highlight from the star-studded night was a continuing theme of paying homage to the late, great Prince. Comedian Dave Chappelle spoke about Prince before introducing the Roots, Erykah Badu and Bilal (watch him here), who contributed the first tribute.

Stevie Wonder — who had been a part of Madonna's simpler tribute at the Grammys — joined Tori Kelly on an upbeat "Take Me with U."

Jennifer Hudson turned in an unforgettable, vocally knock-down-drag-out "Purple Rain," and stars including Maxwell, Sheila E., D'Angelo, and Janelle Monae also took turns tackling Prince's songbook.

Prince received a BET Lifetime Achievement Award in 2010, six years before his unexpected death.

"Grey's Anatomy" actor Jesse Williams also made headlines for his huge political statement at the star-studded show, where he took home the Humanitarian Award. He said during his acceptance speech, "We’ve been floating this country on credit for centuries, yo, and we’re done watching and waiting while this invention called whiteness uses and abuses us, burying black people out of sight and out of mind, while extracting our culture, our dollars, our entertainment like oil, black gold."

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