When Beyoncé’s “Renaissance” album dropped in July of 2022, there were no clear indicators of just how much of a cultural phenomenon it would be just a year later. The album alone represented an underground culture that has been clawing its way into the mainstream since the 80s. The tour, which continues to weave its way across North America, has only deepened the impact of Beyoncé’s musical creation.
Renaissance and Ball Culture
Ballroom has been brought into the limelight by way of Madonna, shows like” Pose” and “Legendary,” as well as movies like “Paris Is Burning.” Beyoncé’s album was just the latest soundtrack to a culture that has been thriving for years and was a home for many LGBTQ+ members. When “Renaissance” was released, the singer made a statement on her website, dedicating the album to her late Uncle Johnny.
“A big thank you to my Uncle Johnny,” she wrote. “He was my godmother and the first person to expose me to a lot of the music and culture that serve as inspiration for this album… Thank you to all of the pioneers who originate culture, to all of the fallen angels whose contributions have gone unrecognized for far too long. This is a celebration for you.”
In an interview with Tidal Magazine, Jay-Z couldn’t dispute the impact his wife made with “Renaissance” as well.
“Look what it’s done to the culture,” he said. “Look how the energy of the world moved. They play her whole album in the club. I don’t know if I’ve ever seen that. The whole entire joint — like, everything?! Every remix is amazing. Everyone’s inspired. It has inspired the world. Every remix is better than the other one.”
Fans around the world found themselves picking up where Madonna’s “Vogue” left off back in the ’80s. Listeners began getting more acquainted with house music and many dug in their creative bags to create mixes with the songs. Some made their way to Beyoncé themselves. The singer eventually released a remix to her single “Cuff It,” to the beat of Twista’s ’09 hit, “Wetter,” which made its way to the Renaissance deluxe album.
This was all just building anticipation for Beyoncé to announce her tour.
Members of the Bey-Hive typically know that when a new album drops from the singer, a tour is on the horizon. Nothing could have prepared fans for what was to come with the tour when the announcement was made.
She announced the tour on February 1, which included dates for a European leg as well as a North American leg. Immediately, fans took to social media to discuss buying a ticket for her show overseas to make a vacation out of the occasion. It was even reported by the Washington Post, that she raised inflation rates in Sweden due to her visit for the kickoff of the tour.
The European leg of the tour concluded with a revenue of $154 billion, which, according to Billboard, was the biggest leg of any solo Beyoncé tour thus far.
Meanwhile, in America, fans watched all that was happening over in Europe and took notes. Across social media, there were different rules and regulations that were spread to the masses for concertgoers to follow when Beyoncé arrived stateside. The main rule came from a line in the song “Energy”: “Look around everybody on mute.”
When she performs the song on stage, she makes it clear, she wants the crowd silent after that line. She even cuts the music and she and her dancers freeze for one 8-count. Across the pond, the crowds didn’t quite understand the assignment, but fans in the U.S. made sure to spread the knowledge that everyone should be quiet when she prompts them to be. According to Beyoncé herself, Atlanta was “on mute” challenge winner of the tour so far.
The Renaissance Tour Outfits
If there was one thing fans on social media made sure of, it was that everyone had their fits together for the Renaissance Tour. Music festivals like Coachella and Governor’s Ball are typically the types of music events where fans dress up in a type of costume or festive wear to indicate the event they’re going to. A simple concert pulling out this type of creativity in the masses is not common.
Fans drew inspiration from the album’s cover. Shiny cowboy hats and silver/chrome looks were the standard. So much so, that there was a rise in fashion companies selling just that. Brands like Forever 21 and Akira began producing a larger volume of chrome and silver looks along with cowboy boots and hats because of the demand. A TikTok search for “Renaissance Outfits” is filled with thousands of videos filled with chrome looks.
Children Love Beyoncé… and Blue Ivy Carter
One aspect about the Renaissance Tour that is important to note, is that it was for everybody, including children. With over 20 years in the game, Beyoncé has been able to reach many generations with her music and is still continuing to do so. Now, with her tour, she has not only been able to bring out a new generation to her shows but she’s also continuing her legacy with her own child.
Blue Ivy Carter first joined her mother on stage in May during her Paris show. It came as a surprise to many, as no one was expecting Blue to come out and perform. Carter has joined her mother for every show on the tour since. She’s mostly danced background for Beyoncé mid-show but has a solo moment during the show as Bey walks off stage to do a set change. Carter’s performance developed as time went on, growing and glowing each time she graced the stage.
Her reoccurring appearances have resulted in a fan base forming for her. On Twitter, they call themselves the Ivy League and have even joked that this is her show and Beyoncé is just an opening act. Many fans on TikTok have posted videos showing them recreating Carter’s entrance in each show and then busting into the choreography. Children and adults alike have learned all of the moves to the choreography to “Power” which is the beginning of her entrance into the show.
The Renaissance Tour’s Influence Is Far From Over
The Renaissance Tour is still going strong and is expected to continue to grow tremendously in revenue. Back in May, Forbes predicted that the tour will make $2.1 billion, which could make this the highest-grossing world tour. Currently, Beyoncé has made over $295.6 million in sales, according to box office reporting data. This makes it the highest-grossing tour for a Black female artist.
The Renaissance Tour’s influence has not yet been sealed as Beyoncé has several states still left to visit. One thing is for certain, however: this is a tour that will go down in history.