Tina Knowles later added "I stand corrected"
Over the weekend Beyoncé headlined Saturday night at Coachella, making history as the first black woman to top the bill at the Californian festival.
Rising to the occasion for the historic event, the epic set incorporated references to black culture throughout. Playing segments of a Malcolm X speech during the show and nodding to Nina Simone’s ‘Lilac Wine’, Bey also performed an A capella rendition of Weldon Johnson’s ‘Lift Every Voice And Sing’ – often referred to as the black national anthem. The performance also referenced historically black colleges and universities (HBCU).
On Instagram, Beyoncé’s mother Tina Knowles writes that she had her reservations about how easily these references would be understood by the predominantly white audience at Coachella. She also says that she shared these concerns with her daughter before the headline show. On her post, she said:
“I told Beyonce that I was afraid that the predominately white audience at Coachella would be confused by all of the black culture and black college culture because it was something that they might not get. Her brave response to me made me feel a bit selfish and ashamed. She said I have worked very hard to get to the point where I have a true voice and at this point in my life and my career I have a responsibility to do what’s best for the world and not what is most popular
She said that her hope is that after the show young people would research this culture and see how cool it is, and young people black and white would listen to “LIFT EVERY VOICE AND SING and see how amazing the words are for us all and bridge the gap. She also hopes that it will encourage young kids to enroll in our amazing historically black colleges and Universities . I stand corrected”
Beyoncé was originally due to headline last year’s event, but had to pull out on doctor’s orders due to being pregnant with twins. This weekend she returned to Coachella a year later, and reportedly prepared for the event with 11 hour rehearsals.
During the show, the global superstar performed with husband Jay-Z and her sister Solange , and also reformed her former band Destiny’s Child for hit singles ‘Lose My Breath’, ‘Say My Name’ and ‘Soldier’. It is the first time the group have performed together since 2015.
This week Beyoncé announced that she is donating $100,000 to four historically black universities in America, after establishing a scholarship program last year.