Video of a woman singing an incredible a cappella rendition of the national anthem at the Lincoln Memorial in an apparent impromptu performance has been viewed millions of times.
The video that went viral was posted Friday to Facebook by Nay Nichelle, though the footage was uploaded before that to the singer’s YouTube page on June 16.
It begins with a man encouraging the woman — identified as Star Genleah Swain — to sing “The Star-Spangled Banner” in the national monument in Washington D.C.
With a camera pointed at her, and a crowd unaware of what is about to happen, Swain starts singing. Slowly, people can be seen in the background gathering to watch.
By the time she finishes the stirring and heartfelt performance, the large crowd reacts with a loud round of applause.
“Omg! Look at how everyone stopped what they were doing to listen to this young lady sing the National Anthem at the Lincoln Memorial! AMAZING!” Nichelle wrote.
Less than 48 hours after Nichelle posted the video to her page, it had been viewed more than 5.3 million times and shared over 137,000 times.
The post had also been liked about 100,000 times, with many praising the performance. Some of the 19,000 comments beneath the video called for her to sing the National Anthem in next year’s Super Bowl, while others said that her rendition moved them to tears.
One user, Mary Tobin, wrote, “I’m a Combat Veteran and I’ve laid many Soldiers and friends to rest in defense of our nation. Every time I hear the anthem it means the world to me, but when I hear it sung with conviction and strength it makes me even more proud to have served this country because people like you make America worth fighting for…so thank you.”
Another video, posted on Kermit Vigil’s Facebook page, has also been viewed nearly 2 million times.
Swain works as an assistant principal at Jefferson County Middle/High School, according to her own Facebook page.