On the Run Is Beyonce & Jay Z's Epic Moment
It goes without saying that any Beyoncé concert in Houston is special. It's, at the very least, a homecoming. When you add in her mega popular husband and set the whole thing in Minute Maid Park, it becomes even more than that: it becomes an event.
And even still, it's more than that.
On the Run is the culmination of the entire Beyoncé/Jay Z thing. Everything in their professional and personal lives -- every single, every collaboration, every bit of gossip, every moment kept private, every announcement made public -- has been building to this. The public just didn't know it until it happened.
All other photos by Marco Torres
This is their epic, in high definition for the world to see.
Every major concert tour, if it's worth anything, has its capital-m Moment that leaves attendees feeling a rush of emotion. Roger Waters tears down the wall; Kanye speaks to you unfiltered and unedited from the heart; Taylor Swift drives herself to tears; etc. etc. etc. You can put on a major production without one, but to do so is to assign your tour to the dustbin of history.
On The Run has the greatest Moment in modern touring history, a moment of stagecraft that no one else in music could get close to let alone replicate. It's beautiful in its simplicity, yet the image it creates is magic.
Picture this: two of the most beloved figures in modern music stand with their arms around each other, facing away from the crowd and looking up at home movies of their child -- the one the public rarely if ever sees, whose announcement during the 2011 VMAs set a tweets-per-second record, and who is the youngest artist to ever hit the Billboard charts, while the proud father beams and the mother sings her most sublime of hooks ("Halo"). It's the ultimate pull-back-the-curtain moment from a couple who spent so long not showing anything and the obvious pride and happiness on their faces is enough to melt even the darkest of hearts.
That it comes after almost two and a half hours of breakneck energy and a seemingly endless string of hits -- the set list runs more than 40 damn songs -- keeps it from being too sappy and saccharine. They may walk the stage icons and kick ass like superheroes and they may live in a world that most of us can barely dream of, but they're also people with tragedies and triumphs, hopes and fears, and all those other things that make up the human experience.
What they've produced with this tour is a masterpiece, but one that's very personal. It may be the world's biggest victory lap, and it's entirely deserved.
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