February 13th, 2012
10:56 AM ET
Jennifer Hudson pulled off a touching, 11th hour tribute to Whitney Houston at the Grammy Awards Sunday following the death of the 48-year-old legend.
It was a performance executive producer Ken Ehrlich promised would be "respectful" to Houston's legacy. Hudson proved his word when she took the stage with nothing but a mic and a spotlight, and offered a moving performance of "I Will Always Love You."
At the end of the song, she honored Houston by saying, "Whitney, we will always love you."
It was clear during her time on stage that Hudson was holding back tears, and reports are circulating that the singer had an understandably difficult time preparing for her performance.
According to the Hollywood Reporter, "She was having a hard time getting through the song, especially on the second run-through," a source said.
But on Sunday, the nerves were barely visible, and more importantly, weren't present in Hudson's voice at all.
LL Cool J offered on Sunday's red carpet that the Grammy producers picked someone who could be Houston's successor, saying, "She's the closest thing we have now to what Whitney was."
Do you agree? A replay of Hudson's performance is below:
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