Posted On 05 Aug 2014
If you don’t know by now, I am a HUGE Beyoncé fan (see my review of her show last year here: Beyoncé Summer 2013 Concert Review ) so it was a no brainer that I would be attending her On The Run Tour with Jay Z at the Rose Bowl. It was everything and more that I hoped it would be.
Despite the on again – off again rain throughout the night, all fifty-five thousand of us in attendance at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena last Saturday night couldn’t stop screaming, dancing and singing along to music’s royal couple. In fact, we all stood or rather danced the entire show!
Beyoncé and Jay Z played with the marriage-on-the-rocks rumors, both onstage and in the Bonnie and Clyde-themed film montage that ran behind them for the two-hour-plus show. In the video, the two are partners in crime, robbing banks, outrunning the law and frolicking in dirty hotel rooms. The words “This Is Not Real” flashed often over the scenes.
My sister and I arrived at our seats just as the two emerged on the stage. Everyone rose to their feet and screamed at their top of their lungs (myself included).
The dynamic duo opened up their set with “Bonnie & Clyde,” which set the crowd into a frenzy. For the first 20 seconds or so, I couldn’t hear the song because the crowd inside the historic stadium was deafening. The songs kept coming and coming.
I think that the couple did a great job of carefully creating a set list that pleased the audience and they made sure that each song complemented one another. The transitions from song to song were very smooth and well put together.
When Jay was losing Bey fans with “Big Pimpin’,” she hit the stage with her easy sing-along, “Naughty Girl.” When Bey ballads such as “Love On Top” became too lovey-dovey, Jay appeared with anthems like “Izzo (H.O.V.A).”
Beyoncé’s performance was up to her usual standard of perfection. On each song, from “Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)” to “Flawless,” her vocals hit every mark and her choreographed moves (with a dance troupe supporting her) were a video come to life. She was, to use her word, “flawless”. Mrs. Carter’s costumes were sexy and dazzling and there were a billion frameable booty shots.
Jay Z did what he does best. He commanded attention as he walked the stage, bouncing clever wordplay off the crowd. He engaged with concertgoers by urging them to “put their hands in the air”. Jay Z’s stage presence is what sets him apart from most rappers. He really looks like he’s genuinely having fun when he’s up there. The audience certainly feeds off that. He performed many of his classics, such as “Dirt Off Your Shoulder,” “99 Problems” and many others.
He also had a few words of encouragement for the audience: “My advice to you is if you’re gonna follow your dreams, dream unrealistic.” He added that the reason to dream unrealistically is because Beyoncé is from Houston and he is from Brooklyn, and look how far they’ve come. We all cheered in agreement!
The concert ended with a heartwarming rendition of “Forever Young.” A video montage played on the screens on stage of the couple getting married and of the couple playing with their daughter, Blue Ivy. They waved goodbye, thanked their crew, band, backup dancers and everyone in the audience for being in attendance.
Then Jay Z and Beyoncé smiled and held hands as they turned around and walked off the stage. Until next time, Queen Bey!