Rita Ora popped up on Miley Cyrus’ recently launched Bright Minded Instagram Live series for a special fashion-focused episode Thursday morning (March 19).
The U.K. pop star revealed she’s never cared about a song release like her latest single “How to Be Lonely” before because of coronavirus’ effects around the world, even though the show host pointed out its message comes at the right time for social distancing. “I really just want us to become like one unit and come together,” Ora told Cyrus. “If the song helps you, fantastic. But I think right now more than ever, I haven’t wanted to do any radio shows or anything like that.”
She called into the episode from her glam room in London where she rocked something she’s more excited to promote: a custom white tee with a red peace sign over an animated green virus, which she calls “a symbol of unity” with the power to spread knowledge.
“Basically, I have not been able to sleep for literally a week since all of this has been going on,” Ora said on the live episode. “I wanted to get on the phone with somebody who I felt mobilizes society in a way that’s beyond.” She spoke with Irish singer-songwriter Sir Bob Geldof, (“someone who’s done incredible work for charity over the years,” she described), President and CEO of United Nations Foundation Elizabeth Cousens and the World Health Organization (WHO) about taking action until she took matters into her own hands.
She continued, “So I took the symbol of the peace sign, the CNDP [National Congress for the Defence of the People] sign, the classic ’60s peace sign, and I wanted to put the virus on it because this is about playing your part, spreading the knowledge. So I feel like I’ve noticed that some people still don’t know what they need to do…. Even by spreading this sign, it shows that knowledge, that you can actually just divert all of the information to this one website.”
Ora opened up the Stop the Spread shop filled with her green-and-red designed hoodies, T-shirts and stickers ranging from $8 to $50, with all merch proceeds benefiting WHO’s COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund she supported alongside Ariana Grande, Usher and other artists earlier this week.
Ora described the U.K. as “deserted” when Cyrus asked about how the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting the 29-year-old singer’s homeland. “So we’re all really just waiting, sitting on the edge like not knowing what to do. The messaging is not as direct as I’d like it to be, hence why I wanted to do something that was so clear and visual,” she responded. “This is not something we’re trying to kill, this is something that we’re trying to beat.”
The two trend-setters discussed how fashion can further spread the public health directive, from making face masks “punk rock” per Ora’s suggestion to handcrafting designer emblems on them like Cyrus’ “Chanel” mask she made ahead of her later-canceled Australian benefit concert.
To cap their interview, Cyrus brought the focus back to “How to Be Lonely,” the unsung hero of self-quarantine anthems. “I honestly couldn’t believe the thing that’s going on and that my song actually being called ‘How to Be Lonely’ because the song is genuinely about being OK with actually being alone and not having a boyfriend or not having a companion or actually just not being in a relationship for a second or whatever it is,” the singer said. “It’s like finding ways around how you can be happy and still be by yourself.”
Head over to Cyrus’ Instagram to catch the Bright Minded IG Live episode with Ora.