|Taraji P. Henson Takes Saturday Night Live To Church: ‘I Guess You
Can Say I Made It—Hallelujah!’
Article By Anita Halton/ Photo Credit: Dana Edelson/NBC
Over the weekend, Taraji P. Henson turned the iconic Saturday Night Live stage into a simulated church service,
complete with an accompanying choir.
“I spent so many years hustling in this business and now, I’m here, so I guess you can say I made it. Hallelujah!” she
said, before grabbing a microphone and breaking out into a charismatic performance fit for Sunday Morning.
Only the 10th woman of color to host SNL in its 40 year history, Henson, 44, delivered a bold, vocally solid and high
energy opening from Studio 8H at 30 Rockefeller Plaza.
“Used to tip 5, but now it’s 30 percent,” she sang, as an 8-member choral ensemble, adorned in purple and gold robes,
sang in perfect harmony, “Cause she made it.”
The lyrics of the show opener listed a number of undesirable things Henson once did before her success in her role as
Cookie on Empire. It also included scenarios detailing what she could have currently been doing were it not for her hit
The actress, who has been in the business 20 years, belted, “Oh yes I made it! Almost sold my organs just to pay the
The background vocalists followed up with “Still got her kidneys!”—because, well, she made it, of course.
Though the exuberant musical selection was rehearsed and humorous at its core, Henson’s genuine sense of joy and
appreciation shone through the shenanigans typical of SNL opening monologues.
“Now listen,” Henson said mid-song, “instead of worrying about where we want to be, how about we try to be thankful
for where we’re not. Think about all the things we could be doing right now.”
She then added, “We’re blessed. Somebody better testify!”
With that, robed SNL cast members came forward, sharing their own could-have-been testimonies.
“I could have been the oldest cast member in Good Burger 7,” said Kenan Thompson, alluding to the comedy film
spawned from his Nickelodeon sitcom, All That, back in the 90s.
Henson smirked and said, “Thank God you made it.”
It's safe to say she gave plenty props to God.
At the conclusion of the show, as Henson thanked SNL for having her and UK folk rock group Mumford & Sons for
being guest performers, she also shouted, “Thank You, Lord!”
Watch her opening below.