Up Close and Personal for Beyoncé's "Formation" Tour at Citi Field

Up Close and Personal for Beyoncé's "Formation" Tour at Citi Field


Up Close and Personal for Beyoncé's "Formation" Tour at Citi Field news

Getting too close to Beyoncé during a concert is dangerous. Not because there’s any imminent threat to your safety—but because it becomes increasingly difficult to control your emotions when the distance between yourself and the Queen disappears.

Or, at least, that was my experience at Citi Field on Tuesday night, where Bey performed the first of two New York concerts as part of her “Formation” world tour. Thanks to AmexAcess, I was able to score field seats for the show (which had obviously sold out in an instant) and it was simply overwhelming being that close to her.

After opening performances from DJ Khaled, French Montana, Travi$ Scott, Fabolous, Busta Rhymes, Fat Joe and Remy Ma—who performed their hit “All the Way Up”—​there was a pretty lengthy lull where I had time to make a few guesses about what the opening song might be.

I got so lucky. Bey opened with “Formation.” And it gave me chills.

An HBO special is cool and all, but watching her from a few feet away…the way she commands the stage, dances like it’s the last time she’ll ever dance, and flirts with the crowd while singing flawlessly is simply unreal.

In fact, most people still have a hard time believing Beyoncé’s human, so when she sneezed during “Love on Top”—sneezing: a totally normal and mundane thing that all humans do—the crowd lost their minds. That’s the power of Bey.

Over the course of two hours, she ran through a perfectly curated set that included LEMONADE tracks like “Sorry” and “All Night,” along with Destiny’s Child-era cuts like “Survivor,” and later anthems like “Me, Myself And I,” and “Diva.”

Even though the setlist spanned several albums, Mrs. Carter seemed to handpick the songs that would weave into the most cohesive storyline, and still play off the themes in her most recent release. She took the audience on an emotional journey, encouraging us to be confident and independent, while reminding us that we can all recover from heartbreak and come out stronger on the other side.

Her emotions seemed so raw as she sang songs like “1+1” and “Mine,” but she punctuated that by completely turning up and dancing her ass off to hits like “Panda” and “Cut It.”

The show also happened to be on what would’ve been Prince’s 58th birthday, so the night would not have been complete without a little “Purple Rain” (plus a tribute in the form of “The Beautiful Ones”).

For the final moments of her set, Bey did something we rarely see her do: She took off her heels and emerged on stage barefoot with her dancers. Together, they danced up a storm inside a shallow pool of water, while she sang “Freedom” and “Survivor.” Her hair was wet, she was dripping in water, but still looking perfect, and it felt like a spiritual rebirth of sorts. The perfect palate cleanser for the rollercoaster of emotions she took us through.

Walter Frye, the VP of Global Experiential Marketing & Entertainment Partnerships for Amex, was just a few seats away while I tried not to drool on myself. He explained that the company’s goal is to continue giving super stans and cardholders like me “unforgettable experiences,” with artists like Beyoncé. Unforgettable is certainly right. “The success of this partnership further strengthens our commitment to providing our Card Members exclusive access to extraordinary events and special moments,” he added.

Fireworks officially signaled the end of the show, at which point it was time to sprint to an Uber, (also part of Amex’s exclusive concert package) and try to process the fact that I could see Beyoncé’s sweat from my seat.