Dropping the video for her new single – Formation – just 24 hours before the Super Bowl; Beyoncé’s half time performance was nothing less than epic. Featuring dancers wearing Black Panther berets, saluting and performing arranged in the letter ‘X’ (in reference to African- American Civil rights activist Malcolm) Beyonce rattled America’s living rooms as she asserted her support for the Black Lives Matter movement and has had everyone talking since.
(Below, Check out Beyonce performing at the Superbowl 2016)
The accompanying video (currently being called ‘an education on the black American experience,’) includes heavy, striking visual imagery and references Black Lives Matter, the devastating aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and depicts the slogan ‘stop shooting us’ in the closing sequence. With the deaths of Trayvon Martin and Sandra Bland being strong focal points in the Black Lives Matter movement, inclusion of such shows Beyoncé clearly asserting her support for black culture and calling for change.
(Check the Formation music video on Washington Post with their annotations:)
Now being branded a ‘Black-power anthem’, Formation itself witnesses Beyoncé emphasise her identity as a powerful black female, pay homage to her southern roots and use her international platform to highlight the prominent issues surround Black civil rights in America. In addition, Beyonce lets the public know she is above all the tabloid fodder that has surrounded her family and asserts her pride in their traditional black heritage through the lines: ‘I like my negro nose with Jackson five nostrils.’ Alongside this, with a cameo from Blue Ivy, Queen B addresses comments about Blue’s hair singing: ‘I like my baby heir with baby hair and afros.’ Proving she won’t be conforming to typical beauty ideologies anytime soon, Beyonce once again becomes the figure for female empowerment. And just in case there was ever any doubt – lyrics like: ‘I slay, I slay , all day,’ make it clear who the true source of power here is.
(Below, cameo from Blue Ivy)
But, perhaps the most exciting news of all: there is plenty more of Queen B to come in 2016. Her new album is rumoured to drop in the next few months and the ‘flawless’ diva herself announced a world tour kicking off in April straight after her iconic super bowl performance. Tipped to be one the biggest world tours in 2016 – Queen B will be headlining Wembley stadium for the first time in her career and with the London and European tour dates set to be during June and July!
We simply just CANNOT wait!
Words : Helena Phillips