On Saturday, April 14, 2018, Beyoncé made history as the first black woman ever to headline Coachella. As she put it ever so candidly “ain’t that about a bitch?” Fans were distraught last year when the mega-star had to suddenly cancel her performance as a result of her pregnancy. She would later deliver twins Sir and Rumi Carter in June of 2017.
Because so many fans were upset by Beyoncé’s sudden cancellation, she made a vow to fans that she would give us a show worth waiting for this year, and it’s safe to say that she did not disappoint. Her Coachella performance has further solidified her rightful place on the throne as the best performer living and, arguably, of all time. The singer’s groundbreaking performance raked in about 458,000 live streams globally, breaking YouTube’s streaming viewership records, according to a YouTube spokeswoman. The performance, which commenced at 2:05 a.m., lasted for approximately two hours—and yes, she danced and sang the entire time. Her performance, which will go down in history as one of the greatest shows of all time, has forced people to change the name from Coachella to Beychella.
Beyoncé’s show paid homage to Historically Black College Universities (HBCUs) and is a lot different from what Coachella audiences are used to. The trite indie/hippie scene that Coachella is known for was completely overwritten with Black excellence and Black womanhood. Beyoncé really has a way of making Black women feel empowered in unimaginable ways. It’s in her music. It’s in her performance. It’s in her spirit, which probably explains why the BeyHive (her followers) is still talking and tweeting about a performance that happened a week ago.
The 36-year-old performer provided a glimpse into the “traditional black college experience.” Not only did she showcase a step-team, a marching band and majorettes, she also created a fictional sorority, Beta Delta Kappa, and a fraternity as well—all essential components to a real HBCU homecoming-like experience.
Though the spotlight was all hers, Beyoncé did not let that stop her from sharing the stage with a few special people throughout her set. We finally got the Destiny’s Child reunion that we have all secretly been longing for. And no, Michelle did not mess up. The performance was comprised of their biggest hits, and they wore refined versions of the outfits they wore in the Soldier music video, which made the performance all the more special. It’s apparent that Beyoncé is the only break-out star to come from the girl group, but she definitely has not forgotten where she came from. To see her still showing love and support to fellow members Kelly and Michelle was both touching and inspirational. She, of course, had her famed beau Jay-Z on stage to perform together as well, which has us all in anticipation for the On the Run Part II tour, kicking off this summer. Last but not least, she also featured fellow singer and sister Solange on stage to dance with her to “Get Me Bodied.”
While the performance was chock-full of the singer’s most memorable hits, she featured the music of other artists as well. Not only did the superstar share the stage with various other artists, she also paid homage to other musicians. Throughout the performance, you can hear familiar voices such as Kendrick Lamar, Drake and other notable performers blaring from the speakers. She also did a beautiful rendition of the “Black National Anthem” that caught everyone by surprise. Her show was important for so many different reasons. An issue that Beyoncé has spoken up on in the past is that people forget that she is a Black woman because of how iconic she is. Since then, she’s made it her goal to showcase positive images of blackness throughout all of her performances and has never looked back.
The dancers, the musicians, the concept, the amazing vocals and the multiple costume and nail changes made for a great show. If this performance was even a slight indicator of what is to come for her and Jay-Z’s upcoming tour, we’re in for a treat.