So I went to see Beyonce Knowles on Thursday night at the o2 Arean in London and she was INCREDIBLE. I’ve never seen her perform live before because I’d always been too late to get a ticket and even this time round I was too late to get a ticket. What’s wrong with me?!
Luckily a friend had pre-empted my disability to independently purchase a ticket on time and got one for me. Result! I’ve loved Beyonce ever since I was bought Destiny’s Child, The Writing’s On The Wall album from my [now] brother-in-law (I always knew he was the one for my big sis). Beyonce was the one with the lead vocals, the blonde braids and the tacky belly button piercing. She had me at *no no no no no*.
About 15 minutes before the show a banner that read BEYONCE appeared and the crowd went ballistic. Needless to say, the word ‘hysteria’ doesn’t come close to describing the atmosphere in the room. Staff members even had to keep providing water for the crowd in case anyone passed out. I was excited but there was no way I was going to faint. I’d paid good money to see this!
Finally, Beyonce graced us by the presence of her being with the opening song Haunted which sent shivers down my spine. Soon after followed the procession of dancers emerging, Beyonce’s all female band, a giant LED screen, “I’m in for a treat” I thought and I wasn’t wrong.
Beyonce got changed at least six times, didn’t stop dancing and even managed to incorporate Pac Man into her concert! I couldn’t believe how many songs she got through. Cameo’s hit Candy sampled in her single Blow and Jay Z came out (which I totally knew was going to happen but I still screamed like a little girl). She belted out I Will Always Love You by Whitney Houston, a seamless segue into her emotional song Heaven and all this whilst creating an immense sense of female empowerment throughout. The woman’s a capital G (for Genius)!
People have questioned whether Beyonce’s image fits with the sentiment or meaning of her use of Nigerian author, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichies’s TED speech on feminism beginning “We teach girls to shrink themselves to make themselves smaller” in Flawless, (which was literally spelt out in ten foot long words on a giant LED screen during the concert btw), but there is simply no question that Beyonce was (and still is) a model of control and power. Even when she had her legs wide open and was grinding on a pole whilst singing Blow or when she was sprawled across a grand piano in a skimpy, flesh coloured catsuit, she always managed to deliver a message that seduction and sexuality are powerful skills that we should not only embrace but use. These are skills I’m yet to learn. Why wasn’t I taught this at school?! (Although that lesson would have been slightly disturbing in the classroom come to think of it).
It was one of the hardest working shows I’ve ever seen. Days later and I’m still giddy with glee. Beyonce is a person who just keeps moving forward and you cannot take your eyes off her. But one thing’s for sure, *I woke up like this*; croaky. Next time I’ll leave the singing to Beyonce.