The support for the Olympians of the U.S. women’s gymnastics team keeps pouring in, this time from Grammy-award-winning superstar Taylor Swift.
NBC recruited Swift to write a moving piano piece and voiceover narration for an inspirational promo video. The title of the video is “The Unexpected,” and it references Simone Biles’ sudden departure from the team and all-around competitions.
On Tuesday, Biles stepped down from the team finals after a miscalculation on a vault performance. She said she needed to focus on her mental health, not wanting to risk injuring herself by competing when she’s not in the right headspace. Her teammates stepped up to take her place, which is what Swift references in the Olympics promo video.
Taylor Swift Says Olympians Suni Lee and Jade Carey ‘Belong Here’ at Tokyo Olympics
“Life can surprise you — it can humble you. It can test you. It can inspire you,” Swift starts out saying in the video.
With each phrase, a different clip plays of Biles and her fellow Olympians Suni Lee and Jade Carey. We catch glimpses of them among several other gymnasts at a gym, all of them warming up and practicing difficult stunts.
When Swift says, “It can test you,” Lee throws herself into the air on the uneven bars and misses the bar on her way down. She bellyflops hard onto a landing pad, but in the next second, the clip shows her hoisting herself back up on the bars. The look on the gold medalist’s face is pure determination and grit.
And as Swift says, “It can inspire you,” the video cuts to Biles talking to Lee at the practice gym. That sums up exactly the role Biles stepped into on Tuesday and Thursday, encouraging and supporting her fellow teammates. Biles was expected to win big at the all-around competition on Thursday, for which she’s the reigning champ. But instead, Swift reminds us that she had a different part to play in the competition, just like Lee and Carey when they stepped up for Biles.
“They didn’t expect this to be the story, but that doesn’t mean they weren’t ready for the spotlight,” Swift continues. “They’ve worked for this. They’ve dreamed about this. They belong here. So don’t be surprised as the story take flight from here in the women all-around in Tokyo.”
Now, the video alternates between the Olympians practicing at the gym and shining at the Tokyo Olympics. We see Lee and Carey excel, representing their country when Biles and the rest of the world needed them to.
While Swift’s message doesn’t reference it, by that point we know that Suni Lee has won the gold medal for the all-around competition.