TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – As the sky transformed from a colorful hue to darkness, glimpses of silver and metallic covered every corner of Raymond James Stadium Wednesday night as fans anxiously awaited Queen Bey’s arrival.
Before Beyoncé took the stage, soft ballads filled the air in place of an opening act. Behind the stage sat a massive screen painted with a blue sky and clouds. As moments passed, the stadium fell silent as the blue sky was stripped away little by little, revealing a naked Beyoncé laying across the screen.
With all eyes on the screen, her voice pierced through the silence as she recited the foundation of her concert.
“I close my eyes and travel through realms of space and time. Reality holds no power or control of my state of mine. On my voyage to find a source to charge my inner being…I find the Mecca: Chicago, ATL, and NYC. Motor City opulence. House, these gritty beats.”
Then, just like that, Queen Bey rose from under the stage and opened her two-and-a-half-hour-long concert with the most angelic performance of “Dangerously In Love.” From there, her performance became a whirlwind of metallic, sexiness, and everything Renaissance.
Throughout her show, Beyoncé gave the people what they wanted. From her classic hits to her most recent ones, she transformed “Tampa Bey” into her own House of Renaissance, rapping, twerking, and vogueing her way through the “hottest show” she’s ever done.
Although Raymond James Stadium dodged the rain, the humidity ran rampant, which led to Beyoncé saying she believed Wednesday night’s concert was the hottest she’s done, but the fans still kept the “ENERGY” going.
“This is the hottest show I think I’ve ever done,” Beyoncé told the Bey Hive. “And y’all still gave us so much energy. I want to say thank you.”
Aside from the heat, the astounding vocal performance, jaw-dropping visuals, and insane choreography, this concert, and more specifically, the tour, served as an homage to the singer’s late Uncle Johnny and other late angels of the Black Queer community.
As the night went on, her concert was broken up into different acts, with each section transitioning into the next with the most eye-catching visuals I’ve ever seen.
Her opening act was, of course, none other than Beyoncé herself. During this, she took her time gracefully singing each throwback ballad, cover, and even a Tina Turner tribute, all while chatting with fans in between.
The next act was RENAISSANCE, where the 32-time Grammy Award winner performed songs from her most recent album, “RENAISSANCE,” which was Influenced by the underground LGBTQ-dominated ballroom scene.
With each act being introduced, fans couldn’t help but be captivated by her ever-changing outfits, metallic robot arms, the dancers, and the different stage props she used to sit on while singing. She even rode across the stage while sitting atop a tank.
During her “Opulence” act, Beyoncé, covered in a camouflage outfit, welcomed her firstborn, Blue Ivy Carter, onstage to perform with her. Dancing alongside her mother, Blue Ivy, who is only 11 years old, slayed her choreography, and fans gave her the warm welcome she deserved, chanting her name as the act came to a close.
Toward the end of the show, Beyoncé touched on a few of her popular songs, like “Blow,” a tease to “Countdown,” and “End of Time.” Fans hardly stayed in their seats during these moments. The aisleways on the floor were a swarm of Bey Hive members letting it loose!
While her latest album was inspired by the ballroom scene, and her tour focused heavily on celebrating the Black Queer community. Beyoncé’s concert also included nods to Black icons from the past and present, including Diana Ross, Tina Turner, Grace Jones, Kendrick Lamar and Big Freedia.
Also, throughout the show, it was hard to miss the chants of Kevin JZ Prodigy, a famed ballroom commentator, who is also featured on the “Renaissance” album.
It was clear that the night was a celebration of all love, telling fans that she hopes they felt safe and happy. I think in that moment, surrounded by those who love Beyoncé, all dressed to the nines in metallic, cowboy hats and boots, along with the clicking of paper fans, the Bey Hive felt safe and celebrated.
To close out Wednesday night’s performance, Beyoncé went above and beyond – literally. While singing “SUMMER RENAISSANCE,” the star, dressed in a stunning sparkly dress, glided through the air on a rhinestone horse, thanking everyone for coming out.
While fans filed through the stadium looking for an exit, a picture of her late Uncle Johnny was shown on the screen. It’s safe to say that he was proudly looking down on her.
Beyoncé’s Renaissance World Tour continues Friday with another Florida performance. This time, the superstar will perform at the Hard Rock Stadium in Miami.
RENAISSANCE WORLD TOUR TAMPA SETLIST:
- Dangerously in Love
- Flaws and All
- I’m Goin’ Down (Mary J. Blige cover)
- I Care
- River Deep, Mountain High (Tina Turner tribute)
- I’M THAT GIRL
- ALIEN SUPERSTAR / Sweet Dreams (Medley)
- Lift Off (from Jay-Z and Kanye West’s WATCH THE THRONE)
- 7/11 (Interlude)
- CUFF IT
- BREAK MY SOUL
- Run the World (Girls) ft. Blue Ivy Carter
- MY POWER ft. Blue Ivy Carter
- BLACK PARADE ft. Blue Ivy Carter
- Savage (Remix)
- CHURCH GIRL
- Get Me Bodied
- Before I Let Go (Maze ft. Frankie Beverly cover)
- Rather Die Young
- Love On Top
- Crazy in Love
Anointed Pt. 2
- PLASTIC OFF THE SOFA
- VIRGO’S GROOVE
- Naughty Girl
- MOVE (ft. Grace Jones & Tems)
- AMERICA HAS A PROBLEM
- SUMMER RENAISSANCE