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Show Review: Beyoncé’s Renaissance World Tour is a display of creative excellence at Phoenix stop

“Hi, Arizona.”

A greeting from the Queen sent the crowd into a frenzy. Light from the massive motherboard bounced off the fans’ shiny, sparkling silver outfits and turned the entire inside of State Farm Stadium into a 60,000-capacity disco ball. Beyoncé had arrived (finally) and the BeyHive was buzzing. 

The “finally” note is because the multihyphenate was fashionably late, starting her set more than an hour after it was scheduled to begin. But the extra time simply gave fans more opportunity to parade their looks — several of which were absolutely stunning — and soak in the “ENERGY” of their surroundings.

From the fans’ fashion to the performance itself, the Renaissance World Tour is a spectacle on a scale rarely seen. The onscreen visuals; the many, many costumes (that change every night of the tour;) the choreography; and the pyrotechnics all come together for these memorable displays of creative excellence. Then, they’re immortalized on social media. 

Plenty of attendees who have been consuming RWT content knew generally what to expect at the Glendale date, but that didn’t stop them from getting swept up in the revelry and screeching in delight during key moments. Some to note: When each new costume was revealed, when Blue Ivy emerged to dance to “My Power,” and when the sound came back after a 10-minute outage.

Yes, even after the lengthy delay, some technical difficulties cut all sound at the beginning of “Alien Superstar” during the Renaissance portion of the show. It took a few seconds for Mrs. Carter and her dancers to realize what was happening, but the ensemble quickly exited the stage with as much poise as they show in their routines. As Beyoncé herself said when the performance had resumed, “You know there are certain nights the crowd is so loud and has so much charge, it makes the power go out.” We prefer to think the sound system partook in the “Everybody on Mute” challenge, even if it was a few songs too early. 

While the House of Chrome portions of the performance are perhaps the most documented so far, the Renaissance World Tour showcases just how multifaceted Queen Bey is as an artist. She’s a strong vocalist, shown best on “Flaws and All” during her opening act. She’s a rapper, as shown on her “Savage” remix. She’s a dancer, side-by-side with her daughter and having the time of her life. And she lifts up the people around her, giving dancer duo Les Twins their own solo number and her troupe an opportunity to shine. 

Different themes were interwoven throughout the 30-some song setlist as well: futuristic outfits, ancient apocalyptic motifs, and even a hyper realistic cathedral interior projected on screen for “Church Girl.” The creative team spared no details, and it added intensity to the production.

Few solo artists have had careers quite as illustrious as Beyoncé’s, and her longevity was displayed in the middle of her set with past hits “Get Me Bodied,” “Love on Top,” “Crazy in Love,” and “Naughty Girl.” Her dedicated fans loved every single throwback, of course, but notably went just as rabid for RENAISSANCE material. 

And she delivered it, right up until the venue’s midnight curfew. “SUMMER RENAISSANCE” closed out the show, performed from the saddle of the giant silver horse that carried Beyoncé through the air around the stadium. As she was whisked higher, she became the shimmering human disco ball she requested, mirroring the joy that surrounded her. 

Story by Taylor Knauf
Photos courtesy of Beyoncé