Clive Davis' Grammy Party Class Photo: Jennifer Hudson, John Legend, Camila Cabello and More (Exclusive)

On the eve of music's big night, Sony Music's chief creative officer, for the 42nd year, brought together industry titans and top talent — including Katie Couric, Ben Platt, Leslie Odom Jr., Gladys Knight, Barry Manilow, Luis Fonsi, Quincy Jones and Logic — at the Sheraton Times Square in New York.

Jay Z might have received the Grammy Salute to Industry Icons Award at Clive Davis and the Recording Academy's annual Pre-Grammy Gala, but the night really belonged to the ladies.

Katie Couric kicked off the proceedings at the Sheraton Times Square, introducing the 85-year-old Davis as "the original American idol," and Gladys Knight, Alicia Keys and Jennifer Hudson gave epic performances before a room packed with such luminaries as Quincy Jones, Jamie Foxx, Tina Fey, Martha Stewart, Jerry Seinfeld, Ivana Trump, Katie Holmes, Andrew Lloyd Webber and Sting.

Knight joined Dear Evan Hansen's Ben Platt and Hamilton's Leslie Odom Jr. in a Broadway medley, then went solo with "Stand by Me," bringing the crowd to its feet. Keys performed piano renditions of Jay Z chart-toppers, and Barry Manilow, Luis Fonsi, Migos, Khalid and Logic also took the stage.

Davis announced that Hudson had been handpicked by Aretha Franklin to play the icon in an upcoming biopic and, fittingly, Hudson closed the evening with an incendiary performance of Franklin hits, including "Respect." 

This story first appeared in the Jan. 31 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.