COACHELLA NOW NEEDS TO BE CALLED ‘BEYCHELLA’
Beyonce’s headlining set at the first iteration of this year’s Coachella was nothing short of a well-oiled, carefully-executed party.
Plenty of wardrobe changes, thematic elements and surprise appearances is all everyone expected of Beyonce as she launched into her biggest performance since giving birth. Saturday evening, Bey was tasked with being the first black female headliner in the festival’s history, and she clearly took such an accomplishment to heart. Incorporating significant elements of the African-American experience, she debuted in a regal selection opening with a rendition of “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” effectively transitioning into her “Formation.”
A central theme of the performance was set on historically black colleges and universities. It was a clear allusion as her musical backing arrived courtesy of a full-fledged marching band and drumline that packed out an extensive set of bleachers onstage while her backup dancers all took on the roles of majorettes while select male dancers appeared to take part in a line of brothers in a fictional fraternity, affectionately deemed Bugaboos by Beyonce while she led them all through a series of steps and strolls.
Beyonce would change a total of four times, breezing solo through cuts like “Drunk In Love,” while cruising above the crowd in a floating apparatus, “Flawless,” “Feeling Myself,” and “Partition.” Naturally, Jay-Z showed face to lead his wife into the couple’s “Déjà Vu” collab before vacating the stage.
But the night’s most nostalgic and exciting turn arrived when Kelly Rowland and Michelle Williams hopped onstage to unite Destiny’s Child once more as many had hoped when the three women emerged from beneath the stage in a signature Charlie’s Angels pose. They cut through hits like “Lose Your Breath,” “Say My Name,” and “I Need a Soldier” before making room for Solange to join her older sister onstage for a playful dance routine set to “Get Me Bodied.”