The world is buzzing about Beyonce’s Homecoming documentary on Netflix. If you haven’t watched it, you should. It gives incredible insight to a woman who has inspired and continues to inspire countless people all over the world. It was an absolutely riveting watch for me, and here I share 6 things that I learned from the docu:
Going hard (till you win): Beyonce is not a mere mortal I tell you. She practiced and rehearsed for Coachella for almost a year beforehand – think it was something in the vicinity of 8-9 months. Let that stick with you for a bit. She practiced for 9 months for a 2-hour performance!!! She was responsible for the scripting, production and styling of the show. She personally picked every dancer, went over every routine, and STILL found time to be a mother and a wife. Let’s not talk about the fact that she was on a very STRICT diet while on it – no fish, meat, carbs, diary or alcohol. ‘Yonce is a super talented, super human, and a super great example of the fact that being a star requires an abundance of hard work, focus and discipline. I stan.
The Power of Collaboration – I looked away from my computer screen for one split second, and when I turned back – Destiny Child was on! I whooped, hollered and shook my skinny-girl booty all at once. All Destiny Childs’ Albums were the soundtrack to my teenage years and 20s. It was GOOD to see Kelly and Michelle jam along with Beyonce. It was such a powerful, affirming, beautiful moment for the group – that I blew like a billion kisses to them. It also got me a wee bit emotional. Gosh! 🙂
Letting other women shine in your light: And just as I was thinking to myself, “Ah! this one that she brought DC on, is she going to bring her sister on too?” And just like that! Poof! Solange Knowles appeared on the stage. Listen! Listen! They must have heard me screaming down Union Street in Edinburgh, because I COULD NOT contain myself. Get Me Bodied is NOT a song you can do sitting down, and I LOVE LOVE LOVE the way the sisters had so much fun with it. I did too! You should’ve seen me doing my Naomi Campbell walk. 🙂
The strength in vulnerability: Beyonce shared a lot of deeply personal and intimate things in the Homecoming documentary. She spoke candidly about how difficult pregnancy with her twins was. How hard it was for her body go back to it’s original form, she spoke about “cut muscles” and having internal spasms while rehearsing. “There were days that I thought I’d never be the same. My strength and endurance would never be the same.” It was all so powerfully beautiful and human – something a lot of women who’ve had children would connect to.
Homage to creative icons: I studied English Literature, so I was practically swinging from the chandeliers with the way Beyonce paid homage to literary icons, musicians, poets, thinkers and creatives. The documentary was sprinkled with quotes and content from greats like Maya Angelou, Nina Simone, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Audre Lord, Toni Morrison, Alice Walker and others! Whew! I can’t tell you how many times I was nodding like an agama lizard and snapping my fingers. It was a “spiritual” something!
The beauty in diversity: One beautifully important thing that the documentary showed, was the beauty and power of diversity (and inclusion). The dancers, back-up singers and performers were made of the most beautifully diverse people. I saw hair of every texture and colour. I saw different kinds of people represented. From the nursing mother who brought her child with her on the show, to those guys who could contort their bodies in many different (painful?) ways, to the Nigerian-borne, Atlanta-raised lady who attended an HBCU – it was a beautiful explosion of colours, hues and textures. Speaking about HBCU’s, that experience was celebrated in full form during the documentary, and reemphasised the beauty of the African American experience.
There were other moments in the documentary that made my heart leap – the moment she talked about her fierce love for her family (I felt that DEEP in my chest), her warm beautiful pride in being a mother – when she talked about her “fifty-leven” children, the awe, respect and “she’s the boss” look that Jay gave her when she was addressing her team, when she needed them to go harder, how she squealed & giggled when she FaceTimed Jay to tell him she could fit into her old costume, when she prayed and gave thanks at the start of the rehearsal. Everything was absolutely beautiful to watch.
The entire documentary is a celebration of a woman, artist and an icon. Salute Beyonce!