SNL Opens With Ukrainian Chorus Singing Prayer Hymn — Watch Video

This weekend’s Saturday Night Live opened on a serious note, as it is wont to do in the wake of real-life tragedy.

The Feb. 26 show opened with no applause, while cast members Cecily Strong and Kate McKinnon came out, dressed in black and a dark floral dress, to introduce the Ukrainian Chorus Dumka of New York.

The chorus proceeded to sing “Prayer for Ukraine” while standing behind a table of candles — the center section of which spelled “KYIV,” as in the capital of Ukraine, which Russia launched an attack on Thursday morning.

Watch the full segment above.

The atypically serious, musical opening was akin to when the New York City Children’s Chorus opened a December 2012 SNL with “Silent Night,” days after the Sandy Hook school shooting

Similarly, in November 2016 — as tribute to singer Leonard Cohen, who had died that week, and in the wake of Hillary Clinton’s presidential election loss — McKinnon-as-Hillary sang “Hallelujah” (with modified lyrics).

Did you find the Ukrainian Chorus Dumka of New York’s performance as beautiful as it was sad?

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