Like Taylor Swift with the Eras tour and Greta Gerwig with Barbie, Beyoncé is also breaking records this summer: Her Renaissance Tour has already become the highest-grossing tour by a Black artist, breaking her own record with the Formation Tour in 2016. Her two shows at New Jersey’s MetLife Stadium were the highest-grossing concerts by a female artist in history. It’s projected that her tour, by the time it wraps up in October, could gross over $2 billion, becoming the highest grossing tour in music history.
To understand Beyoncé's impact this summer through the Renaissance Tour, we'll use Power Pairs as a lens. Beyoncé's Power Pair is an Empathetic Entrepreneur. (For a refresher on what dynamics the hexagons represent, read here.)
In the Power Pairs Universe, Beyoncé has an Orange Anchor. (To understand more about Anchors and Spotlights, read here.) Orange is ambitious, innovative, and focused on opportunities to connect with the customer, which ultimately leads them to success. Throughout her decades-long career, Beyoncé has shown her Orange Anchor in many ways: She’s constantly innovating to deliver her art in a way that will be successful. For example, ten years ago, she released her self-entitled album digitally, on a quiet December Friday, with no promotion beforehand. It became the fastest selling album on iTunes and hit No. 1 in more than 100 countries almost immediately.
Today, Fridays are known as “new music Fridays” (previously, new music was released on Tuesdays) and digital releases of albums (instead of physical CD releases) are the norm. Beyoncé really did “change the game with that digital drop,” a perfect example of her Orange Anchor at work.
For her current tour, The Renaissance World Tour, Beyoncé shows a Green Spotlight. Green values connection and puts people first. Green is guided by feelings, and Beyoncé’s Renaissance Tour is a celebration of Black queer culture, with disco-inspired music giving way to an opulent display of ballroom culture. The show is lighthearted, with dazzling dance sequences featuring voguing dancers, and Kevin Jz Prodigy’s iconic voice narrating the transitions. At the end of the show, Beyoncé flies over the crowd, giving her thanks to her band, crew, dancers, and fans, telling them, “I hope this evening was full of joy; I hope it was a release.”
A release, indeed – her show prioritizes and celebrates the contributions of a community not only marginalized, but often the brunt of hate crimes. In the midst of the North American leg of her tour, a Black, queer man in New York City, O’Shae Sibley, was fatally stabbed while voguing to one of Beyoncé’s tracks, with his attackers yelling homophobic slurs at him in the moments prior to the attack. Despite this tragic reality for the LGBTQ+ community, Beyoncé offers a safe-haven for people to come together, celebrate their beauty and resilience, and experience joy through connection. Recently, she even invited fans to all wear silver to her shows in honor of Virgo season (Beyoncé’s zodiac sign) on an instagram post, “Everybody mirroring each other's joy,” a Green characteristic in action.
Beyoncé exhibits her care and empathy in tangible ways, as well, with her charitable foundation BeyGOOD having pledged $2 million to students and entrepreneurs throughout the Renaissance Tour. At each stop, she’s making good on her promise, also donating to local businesses in the cities she visits. She even paid an additional $100,000 to keep the DC Metro running for several hours after her show finished, ensuring her fans would have safe, affordable ways to return home after her concert.
And like Taylor Swift and Barbie, Beyoncé’s tour is expanding local economies as well, a phenomenon coined as “The Beyoncé Bump.” Together, these women drove the economy this summer, and in the case of Beyoncé’s Renaissance Tour, spreading joy and encouraging connection while doing it.