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Here’s Why Ice Spice’s Presence at the Met Gala Was So Surprising

She is the people's princess.

Ice Spice attends The 2023 Met Gala, posing for photos while holding up a camera.

The first Monday in May is always a bit chaotic, as that’s when The Metropolitan Museum of Art holds their annual Gala. Founded in 1946, the gala is used to raise to funds for the Met’s Costume Institute. It’s always attended by the cream of the famous crop—think the KarJenners and popular singers of the moment such as Billie Eilish and Olivia Rodrigo. However, one attendee’s presence on the beige carpet had everyone talking, and that was Ice Spice.

For those not in the know, Ice Spice is a rapper who rose to fame when her song “Munch (Feelin’ U)” quickly blew up due to its popularity on TikTok. After that, she released two more singles before her EP Like..? was released in January of this year. Ice Spice also collaborated on a remix of her song “Princess Diana” with Nicki Minaj in early April, which took the number one top on Billboard’s Hot Rap Songs. Her career has been on an upward trajectory for almost a year, and it doesn’t seem like it’s going to be slowing down anytime soon.

However, even though Ice Spice has seen great success this past year, her invitation to the Met Gala still came as a bit of surprise, even to her fans. Invitees to the Met Gala have usually been established in their field for a bit of time. For example, someone who had an equally fast rise to fame was Olivia Rodrigo. After her first single “Drivers License” dominated the Billboard Global 200 chart for five consecutive weeks, Rodrigo then released her debut album, Sour, in May 2021, to critical acclaim including two Grammy nominations. So, it wasn’t that much of a surprise when Rodrigo made her Met Gala debut in May 2022. Rodrigo, though new to fame, was still a bit more established than Ice Spice when she made her debut, which makes Ice Spice’s presence at this year’s gala so surprising.

Ice Spice made her Met Gala debut with no album out

Now, I’m not saying that a musician needs to have an album out to qualify for an invitation to the Met Gala. Ice Spice has proved over this past year that she’s a musical powerhouse without one. Her performances garner thousands of fans (also called munchkins), to the point where they swarmed the stage at her performance during a NYFW afterparty. There’s no denying that Ice Spice is incredibly famous, even without putting out a full fledged album.

But, as someone who has been following the Met Gala and its attendees for years, it’s still a bit odd to see someone invited to the party of the year without being cemented as an artist in the traditional sense. I spent most of yesterday wondering how Ice Spice managed to get an invitation to the Met Gala. My working theory at first was maybe it happened due to her relationship with Kim Kardashian, who has attended the gala since 2013.

Ice Spice recently hung out with Kardashian as her daughter, North, is a huge fan. They even made a few TikToks together with North, Ice Spice, and North’s friends lip synching to her music. It wouldn’t be out of the realm of possibility that their friendship got her through the Met doors, but the real answer to the source of her invitation came just hours before the gala started.

Ice Spice received a lucrative and personal invitation from a Met board member

According to TMZ Anna Wintour, editor-in-chief of Vogue and one of the hosts of the Met Gala, personally wanted Ice Spice to attend. Not only did Wintour and team want Ice Spice to attend the gala, but she also partnered with Vogue and eBay to pick out high-end fashion pieces from well-known designers that her fans can purchase though eBay.

Getting the stamp of approval from someone as influential as Wintour only gives more power to Ice Spice’s rising star. I mean, she’s been famous for less than a year with no real album out, and she’s already attended the Met Gala. I can only imagine what other iconic things will be coming from her in the future.

I guess Ice wasn’t kidding when she said they wanna party with Spice!

(featured image: Cindy Ord/MG23/Getty Images for The Met Museum/Vogue)

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A freelance journalist covering pop culture, politics, and everything in between. Can be found crying over Marvel movies (especially those with Wanda Maximoff in it), baking, or reading one of the many books still unread in her library. You can find her on Twitter and Instagram @oh_kayx