Carrie Underwood just showed off a new video ahead of the upcoming televised CMA Fest special, and it's a tear-jerker. The American Idol alum surprised the Andrew Jackson Elementary Eagle Honor Choir, prior to their performance of "The Champion" at CMA Fest, thrilling a few dozen of her younger fans.
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"This makes my heart so happy!" Underwood posted on social media. "I am so proud of the Andrew Jackson Elementary School Eagle Choir! You are all true champions!! [muscle emoji] @CMA @CMAFoundation @Ludacris #MusicEducation."
In the video, the choir director, Franklin J. Willis, can be seen leading the students through a rehearsal, unaware that Underwood was about to join them on stage.
"The kids think they are just here just to rehearse the song 'Champion,' by Carrie Underwood. " Willis said. "What they don't know is, she's going to surprise them."
"I saw this group on Facebook," Underwod said. "You could see how much love and hard work was put into this."
Underwood then walked on stage, with the students screaming and rushing towards the superstar.
"I never thought it was going to be Carrie Underwood, caring about us," an emotional student said, wiping tears away. "It was really special."
"She is such an inspiration to me," said another student.
Underwood also praised the young singers for their bravery in performing in front of such a massive crowd at CMA Fest.
"I can't imagine what these kids are going through right now," Underwood noted. "The excitement, the nervousness, being on a stage like CMA Music Fest."
After their Sunday night performance at CMA Fest, one of the students reflected on the once-in-a-lifetime experience.
"We performed in front of 60,000 people," she said. "It was the best feeling ever. And it makes me feel like I can do anything."
Underwood penned "The Champion" with Brett James, Chris DeStefano and Ludacris, using the song in 2018 for both Super Bowl LII and the Winter Olympics. Underwood was inspired to write the song by reading inspiring sports speeches, but also by looking at her own family as well, including her husband, Mike Fisher.
"I think it started with my parents," Underwood acknowledged. "They just worked really hard and did everything they could to provide for us and make our lives better and give us every opportunity that they could. In a different sense, my husband, on and off the ice, he's definitely a champion of mine.0comments
"I see the dedication that he put into his work playing hockey," she continued. "I admire him so much for that. To see how much he put into, and the love, that he put into his God-given ability was just very inspiring."
Photo Credit: Getty Images/John Shearer