By Michael Kinney
The Norman Transcript
OKLAHOMA CITY —
Most performers know how to put on a show. The good ones even know how to put on a concert.
Then there are the special few who know how to make their time in front of their fans an experience. These elite artists don’t just entertain, they stop time. That is what Beyonce did Friday at the Chesapeake Energy Arena during a stop on “The Mrs. Carter Show World Tour.”
For more than two hours, Beyonce, who is married to hip hop mogul Jay Z (Shawn Carter), put on a high-octane performance that had the capacity crowd at the ’Peake standing, dancing and signing along. In a summer full of big shows at the arena, it’s hard to imagine any being more electric.
“The Mrs. Carter Tour was awesome,” Edna Pittman said after the show. “My girls are still smiling. She is definitely the Queen Bee. Best concert I have ever been to. My girls kept saying we were breathing the same air as Beyonce. I have been to tons of concerts and I am not sure anyone will/can top the show she puts on.”
The night stated off with Luke James taking the stage as the opening act. The 29-year-old R&B crooner from New Orleans performed ballads such as “Make Love to Me” and his Grammy nominated “I want You.”
James’ performance included him handing out roses to the audience and ripping his T-shirt down the middle, which brought a loud scream from most of the ladies in the arena.
After James was finished, there was a 45-minute intermission. While it was too long of a wait, it did give the late arriving crowd a chance to fill the arena.
But once Beyonce hit the stage, there was non-stop music, dancing and singing the rest of the evening.
Her set included a large video screen that showed several different videos and mini movies and trailers. Sometimes they were played while Beyonce sang and others were on display during the seemingly 20 wardrobe changes that took place. Each outfit was more colorful and skin-tight than the next.
Beyonce’s play list was an eclectic sample of the different points in her career. From the Destiny’s Child days to her most recent solo albums. They included “Run the World,” “If I were a Boy,” “Naughty Girl,” “I Miss You” and “Why Don’t You Love Me.”
Throughout the night, Beyonce was joined on stage by an all-female band, backup singers and dance unit. The only men were a pair of twin brothers, who were given several opportunities to showcase their dance skills.
But it was Beyonce’s energy and stage presence that set the tone for the night. Even as she climbed on a line and glided from one stage to another on the other side of the arena, she kept on singing. During one of her flying trips, she performed “Survivor,” which she dedicated to the people of Oklahoma.
Beyonce ended the night “Single Ladies,” Whitney Houston’s “I Will Always Love You” and a stirring rendition of “Halo,” which the entire fan base joined in signing with her.
“I just have to say I’m so happy to be here tonight with you guys,” Beyonce told the crowd. “I don’t want to ever leave the stage. Not with a crowd so incredible. Thank y’all for your energy.”