During her debut performance at the 2021 VMAs, the country superstar celebrated the release of her fifth studio album, Star-Crossed, by giving us her first live rendition of the title track. An introspective meditation on grief, heartbreak and the dissolution of a marriage following her divorce from Ruston Kelly, the song's title pays homage to the tragic story of culture's most famous star-crossed lovers, Romeo and Juliet.
A reference made clear during the final scene of Star-Crossed: The Film, where she watches Juliet's death from the 1968 version of Romeo and Juliet, Musgraves hammered home the Shakespearian inspiration by also casting actress Diane Venora, who played Juliet's mother in Baz Luhrmann's Romeo + Juliet from 1996. And, naturally, with that Easter egg in place, the artist opted for a stage design reminiscent of the iconic scene where Leonardo DiCaprio's Romeo finds Claire Danes's Juliet dead, surrounded by white candle and neon crosses.
True to form though, Musgraves put her own spin on the classic visual with a giant, flaming heart in the back. We love a metaphor!