Raising the Bar: Pink’s Jaw-Dropping 2010 Grammy Performance

In The Air Tonight:
– In The Air Tonight:
Pink during the 52nd Annual Grammy Awards at Staples Center on Jan. 31, 2010 in Los Angeles.

Ken Ehrlich had heard the rumbling. As the man vested each year with creating the Grammy Awards’ “water cooler moments,” the seasoned television producer always looks for stand out performances.

“If you went to the show, it was dazzling,” Ehrlich says of Pink’s spectacular 2010 Grammy performance, “but I actually hadn’t seen it beforehand. When Roger Davies is talking to you, you take him very seriously. But as I told him, ‘I’m a man of vision. You’re going to have to let me take a look.’”

A video of “Glitter in the Air” instantly sold Ehrlich, even though staging a performance that would require a long walk, not one but two aerial moments and a plunge into water was complicated. “When she does it on tour, her show builds to it. We had 19 individual performances, and we were going to have to make it work. I think we tacked an extra half hour onto rehearsal, because that’s all there was.”

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Entering through the tunnel that separates the stage in a lamé hooded gown, Pink’s performance was intimate in a way rarely seen. “That tunnel is maybe 10 feet wide, and we’d never dressed it before. But it created a real field for her to move through.”

Walking through the crowd, she arrived in the middle of the Staples Center as she shed her gown. 

“The round she was on out in the house was a covered stage filled with water. When she went up with those other girls [to do the first aerial piece], we opened it up, so then when she came up into the air the second time, she was drenched. She twisted and flung that water everywhere.”

A decade later, Ehrlich is still thrilled by the moment. He’s also quick to identify the magic. 

“It was all her! Her timing, her sense of knowing herself and the moment, she knew exactly when and where in the song to move. We had her on a wire, 45 feet in the air and hanging by a thread, but she’s powerfully singing like she has both feet on the floor.”

Looking back now, Ehrlich realizes all the variables for a live telecast might be considered risky. But he’d do it again. “She has that capacity. She connects. There are entertainers and performers, she’s an entertainer. Chantel [Sausedo, Ehrlich’s talent producer] said she said to her that night, ‘I feel like you’re singing to me.’ Pink does that like no one else.”