Adele's One Night Only: A Breakdown of Every Must-See Moment

Adele's concert special, featuring a candid sit-down with Oprah Winfrey, was an event fans definitely did not want to miss. Read on for a full recap of her many revelations.

By Samantha Schnurr Nov 15, 2021 4:26 PMTags
Watch: Necessary Realness: Adele Rings in Sad Girl Winter

It was Adele's big night—and the music was just the tip of the emotional iceberg. 

After years of waiting, fans were finally back in Adele's orbit on Sunday, Nov. 14 as she performed some of her new music for the first time ahead of the release of her highly anticipated album, 30. Appearing atop Mount Hollywood with the iconic Griffith Observatory behind her, it was a fitting spot for one of the biggest stars of our time to make her return to the stage. In front of a sea of celebrity guests, she serenaded the crowd—and fans watching around the world—with the best of her discography, including signature songs like "When We Were Young," "Hello" and "Someone Like You." 

But that was only part of the One Night Only special on CBS. She also sat down with Oprah Winfrey to unpack it all: Divorce, weight loss, love, her late father, young son, and her path forward—and you can bet Adele kept it real with us through it all. 

For example, as she told Oprah while reflecting on the aftermath of her divorce, "Made my feet hurt, walking through all of that concrete."

Adele Through the Years

If you missed any part of the grand event, we'll go easy on you with a breakdown of all of the biggest moments. All you have to do is keep scrolling—and maybe grab some tissues. 

A Musical Night

The night was about music—and Adele sure did deliver. In addition to singing her iconic hits—we're talking "Hello," "Skyfall," and "Someone Like You"—she also serenaded the crowd with a few never-before-heard tracks from her upcoming new album, 30. Those songs included "I Drink Wine"—which features the sure-to-be viral lyric, "Soaking it all up for fun but now I only soak up wine"—"Hold On" and "Love Is a Game."

Is that...Leonardo DiCaprio?

While fans tried to fight back tears during the hours-long special, Adele's One Night Only doubled as a celebrity Where's Waldo? Every time the cameras panned into the audience, it was time to spot another very familiar face. So who made the star-studded guest list? Ava DuVernayMelissa McCarthy, a masked Leonardo DiCaprio, Lizzo, Nicole Richie, James Corden, Ellen DeGeneres, Seth Rogen, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Gordon Ramsay, Gabrielle Union, Dwyane WadeTyler Perry and name a few. 

The Moment She Knew

During her sit-down with Oprah Winfrey, Adele recalled a pivotal moment in the course of her marriage to ex Simon Konecki. She was with a few friends and answering questions in a magazine, one of which asked what's something no one would ever know. Adele admitted that she was really not happy nor truly living. "I feel like it was sort of from there that I was like what am I doing? What am I doing it for?" She also revealed that a nuclear family was something she grew up wanting and took marriage very seriously. "I'm just embarrassed," she said, "that I didn't make my marriage work."

"Simon Probably Saved My Life"

Despite parting ways romantically, Adele continues to hold her ex-husband in high regard. She told Oprah, "I think Simon probably saved my life" and credited him and their son Angelo with giving her the stability she needed as a young woman rising to superstardom when she could have "self-destructed." Today, they live across the street from each other, talk apart from their son and have respect for each other. "Even now," she said, "I trust him with my life."

Her Swiftie Son

Taylor Swift can count Adele's youngster, Angelo, as one of her many fans. The singer revealed her 9-year-old went to one of Swift's concerts and "loved it." He was also impressed with how many people attend her shows since he'd only been to Adele's tour rehearsals—when the stadiums were empty. 

Mom's Show

The concert marked the first time Adele's son, Angelo, saw her perform live. "It's the absolute honor of my life, baby, to have you here tonight," she told him from the stage during the show. "And you look so beautiful and so handsome and smart." Adele revealed to Oprah that, while she would be definitely be open to and would like to have more children, it wouldn't be the "end of the world" if she didn't because she had Angelo. 

The Proposal

Adele loves a surprise—so she helped one lucky couple get engaged. During the concert, a man named Quentin escorted his longtime girlfriend Ashley, who was blindfolded and wearing noise-canceling headphones, into the show, where the lights were turned down and everyone was silent. After getting down on one knee and popping the question, the lights went back up to reveal it was Adele's concert they were at. Ashley's stunned face was the cherry on top of the ultra-sweet proposal—and their front-row seats next to Melissa McCarthy afterward didn't hurt either. 

Adele, the Athlete

Adele's 100-pound weight loss was not a result of wanting to shed pounds, but to manage the anxiety attacks she was suffering after ending her marriage. As she explained to Oprah, she noticed she did not have anxiety when she was at the gym and her workouts became "her time" and a way to have a plan and purpose. In response to people's mixed reactions to her weight loss, Adele said, "My body has been objectified my entire career...I was body-positive then and I'm body-positive now, but it's not my job to validate how people feel about their bodies and I feel bad that it's made anyone feel horrible about themselves, but that's not my job." The star also noted she won't be bothered if her weight fluctuates—as long as her muscle memory doesn't go away. After all, at her peak, she was deadlifting upwards of 170 pounds. "I'm actually an athlete," she told Oprah. "If only at school I hadn't discovered boys and someone had told me to do a bit more PE."

Closing the Wound

Adele shared how she made peace with her absent dad, who struggled with alcoholism, before his death in April. While he was sick, Adele visited him in the hopes of playing her a new song called "To Be Loved" so he wound understand her childhood wound of wanting to be loved. He revealed that he had only ever heard the first song she ever wrote, "Hometown Glory," and had not listened to any of her other music. With help from listening to the song and her new album, Adele said they forgave each other. As she said, "When he died, literally, it was like the wound closed up and I've been so open."

A New Approach to Love

In the midst of a new romance with boyfriend Rich Paul, Adele confirmed this is the first time she's "loved myself and been open to loving and being loved by someone else." After the work she's done on herself, Adele told Oprah it will "be interesting to see to what my reaction is like in general to anything that hurts me now that I feel so secure in myself."