Beyonce Formation tour: Best moments
Beyoncé launched her Formation World Tour at Florida’s Marlins Ballpark last night, and ears across Miami-Dade County are still ringing. (Also: alarms.)
Leaning heavily on Lemonade, greatest hits, and single-lady swag, she testified to a sold-out Beyhive, paid sweet tribute to Prince, and put Beckys everywhere on blast in an electric two-hour set. Below, 17 of the show’s most unforgettable moments.
1. Hot sauce in her swag
A pounding “Formation” opener, delivered with the command “Miami, Florida: If you came to slay, say ‘I slay.’ If you are proud of where you come from, say ‘I slay.’ If you slay every day, say ‘I slay.’”
2. Tell him boy bye
She asked, and she received: 36,000 middle fingers in the ballpark went up for the Lemonade banger “Sorry” (not sorry).
3. Calling out cheaters in black and (Jack) white
The seething Lemonade rager “Don’t Hurt Yourself,” with B’s female tour guitarist standing in to deliver Jack White’s sandblasted riffs (His vocals were still sampled), distorted till they were almost unrecognizable..
4. The pre-“Formation” formation
”Run the World (Girls)” in full martial v-formation stomp with 20 backup dancers, full horns, fireworks, and pyro.
5. Alarm call
A furious rendition of her 2007 woman-scorned anthem “Ring the Alarm,” got tucked intoTenor Saw’s endlessly sampled 1966 original and twirled with a quick-cut mashup of “Independent Women” and “Diva.”
6. Woke up like this
Three guesses which track “How many flawless ladies and gentlemen in Miami tonight?” was meant to introduce. She added a little “Feelin’ Myself” later in the mix too.
7. Caribbean cruise line
A callback to 2002’s Sean Paul collab “Baby Boy” delivered with a deep dutty wining to “El Taxi” and segued into the Caribbean rhythms of Lemonade’s “Hold Up” and an all-dancers-on-deck “Countdown.”
8. Mother-daughter — and destiny — bonding
“This confession: “I started a long time ago—1997, almost 20 years,” she said, calling out Destiny’s Child and pointing to Kelly Rowland (“My sister”) in the crowd. “Driving to rehearsal today,” she continued, “My daughter said ‘Mommy are we going to your work?’ She reminded me that I dreamed of this day my whole life, andI’m so grateful.”
9. Cowgirl Bey
Lemonade’s country stomper “Daddy Lessons” transformed into a full hoedown with every dancer in the troop stomping out in a wild kickline.
10. All-the-single-ladies pep talk
Her state of the union address (cc: Mr. Shawn Carter) to introduce 2008’s“Me Myself and I, ” which was stripped down stripped down to become a pure vocal showcase: “No one is responsible for your happiness but you. Just remember that you always have yourself, so you’re never alone.”
11. Special guest stars
Whether they were picked ahead of time or not, the two lucky—and fully ready for their spotlight—audience volunteers brought onstage for the “Single Ladies” dance killed the routine; one girl even capped it with a little freestyle suicide dip.
12. No. 1 in the Lemonade game
If you wondered which track on Lemonade is her favorite, she named it twice: “All Night,” turned onstage into a gospel rave-up and delivered as a tender love song.
13. A tribute to Prince
Most costume changes came with extended dance remixes or instrumental breakdowns, but in the show’s second half the stage went fully quiet as Prince’s “Purple Rain” rose from the speakers. he song played through while the giant video cube onstage glowed purely purple, and later during “Blow,” she segued into Prince protégés Vanity 6’s 1982 classic “Nasty Girl” and asked the audience to scream for Vanity, who died in February.
14. Crazy booty with a side of Summers
Poured into a red latex leotard and stacked with her dancers like dolls in white boxes, she tore through “Crazy in Love,” then segued into “Bootylicious” and Donna Summers’ disco classic “Love to Love You Baby.”
15. Sweet Annie Lennox dreams
One more mashup calling back to female pop titans from other eras: Bey’s own “Sweet Dreams” worked in and out with the 1983 same-name Eurythmics smash.
16. Welcome to Waterworld
In the show’s closing segment the Kendrick-assisted monster “Freedom,” the runway was suddenly flooded with water, and Beyonce and her dancers stomped through it Blue Man Group-style and shoe-less, drenching themselves and the first five rows.
17. And … forgiveness
After an evening filled with fiery speechifying and independent-ladies anthems, she brought the show around much the way Lemonade does with playful, intimate home videos of her husband and daughter and much softer words: “I want to dedicate this song to my family. I want to dedicate this to my beautiful husband. Blue, I love you. Prince, thank you for your beautiful music. Everybody from the top to the bottom, thank you so much.”