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“Somehow You Do”: The emotional undercurrent of Reba’s Sunday performance at the 94th Oscars

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Reba McEntire steps into the spotlight Sunday at the 94th Oscars, performing an Original Song contender alongside Beyonce and Billie Eilish.

It’s not her first time, however: In 1991, she did “I’m Checkin’ Out” from Postcards from the Edge, at perhaps the most difficult time of her life: She’d just lost 8 members of her touring family in a plane crash.

“I was very emotional yesterday about the Oscars,” Reba explained Thursday, “because I said yes to the Oscars in ’91 and then the plane crash happened. And then I went ahead and sang the song because I felt [road manager] Jim Hammond talking to me, saying, ‘Go do it for us. We’re checked out of this heartbreak hotel.'”

“Everybody said, ‘Aren’t you excited?… ‘” she says of this year’s performance. “I don’t feel excited.”

“And so I finally figured it out yesterday,” she reveals. “I thought if I got too excited, something could happen. So I said, ‘God, I’m just gonna give it up to you.’ And it lifted like a hundred pounds. We went to rehearsal and I had a great time.”

Reba’s doing “Somehow You Do” from Four Good Days, written by 13-time nominee Diane Warren, who’s yet to take home the trophy. 

“Even if I wasn’t singing it, I’d hope Diane would win because she’s such a talented writer,” Reba observes. “What a gift she has.”

Already known for bringing the glam — whether she’s hosting or performing — Reba’s upping the ante for Hollywood’s biggest night, sporting two outfits by Dolce & Gabbana. 

“They flew in from Milan and we’ve never had this kind of treatment before,” she admits. “So it’s like, ‘Wow, so this is how they do it for the Oscars!'”

Tune in to watch the 94th Oscars Sunday at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.  

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