Glee star Amber Riley performs powerful, soul-stirring musical tribute to her ‘favourite duet partner’ Naya Rivera

Amber Riley Naya Rivera tribute

Glee star Amber Riley has performed a heartfelt, powerful tribute to her former co-star Naya Rivera, who tragically died in July in a boating accident.

Riley sang her new song “A Moment” in memory of the late actor on Jimmy Kimmel Live on Thursday (August 27).

The star, who played Mercedes Jones on Glee, performed against a backdrop of photos of Rivera taken throughout her life.

She was introduced by guest host Lil Rel Howery, who said: “On a sad note, not too long ago, we both lost a really amazing friend in a tragic accident, and we both will miss her forever.”

In the emotional song, Riley sings the lyrics: “I’m ready to fight, I’m ready to see / What’s on the other side / I’m ready to cry, and just let it be.”

Following the performance, she tweeted: “I didn’t make it 15 seconds before I was a puddle. I love you Naya. RIP angel.”

Amber Riley calls Naya Rivera her ‘favourite duet partner’.

Rivera, who played cheerleader Santana Lopez on Glee, was confirmed dead at just 33 years old on July 14, five days after she went missing while on a boat at Lake Piru in California.

Officials believe the boat may have began to drift while Rivera and her four-year-old son were swimming, with the actress managing to get him to safety but unable to save herself.

Speaking at the time, Riley mourned the loss of Rivera, who she described as her “favourite duet partner”.

“I love you. I miss you. I don’t have words right now, just lots of feelings. Rest in peace angel, and know that your family will never have to worry about anything.”

Her tragic death came as a devastating blow to LGBT+ fans across the world, with many paying tribute to the star for her powerful and groundbreaking portrayal of a lesbian cheerleader in the musical television series.