Grease: Live's Vanessa Hudgens Gives Incredible Performance Hours After Losing Her Father to Cancer

For Grease: Live star Vanessa Hudgens, performing in Sunday’s production was a bittersweet experience.

Less than 24 hours before stepping into the iconic role of Betty Rizzo in front of millions of viewers, Hudgens lost her father Greg to cancer.

In a set of tweets to her 5.7 million followers, Hudgens shared the tragic news of her father’s passing, as well as her intention to dedicate her performance to him:

Hudgens first announced her father’s diagnosis in Aug. 2015 during her acceptance speech for Breakthrough Performer at the Industry Dance Awards.

Of course, you’d never know about Hudgens’ internal struggles by watching her in Grease: Live. From the moment she appeared on camera — and especially during the pitch-perfect “Look At Me, I’m Sandra Dee” and heartbreaking “There Are Worse Things I Could Do” (video above) — she was every bit the spunky, headstrong Rizzo we hoped she’d be.

Your thoughts on Hudgens’ performances? Drop a comment below, then click through our gallery to grade all of tonight’s big numbers.

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