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5 Things We Learned From Beyonce’s “Homecoming”

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Beyoncé is once again proving why she’s the Queen Bey with her new Netflix documentary “Homecoming: A Film By Beyoncè.”

After taking over Coachella last year with her epic and historic set she’s now showing the world just how she did it.

In the two hour and 20 minute concert film Bey takes you step by step (literally) through how she created her massive two-hour tribute to HBCUs and black Greek life, complete with a custom pyramid stage, a killer drumline and roughly 100 dancers. And she did it all less than a year after giving birth to her twins with Jay-Z, Sir and Rumi. Here are five surprising things we learned.

She Didn’t Plan On Having Twins

In “Homecoming,” Beyoncé opens up about her pregnancy with twins Rumi and Sir explaining that it was not planned. Once she found out she says she made the decision to cancel her initial Coachella performance in 2017 and revealed her pregnancy was extremely difficult.

“I had toxemia, high blood pressure and preeclampsia,” she explained sharing intimate shots of her expanding belly and the twins’ birth.

As she neared her due date in June 2017, she says one of the twins’ heartbeats dipped, and she underwent an emergency C-section. “My body went through more than I knew it could,” she says.

She Had A Hard Time Getting Back In Shape

Sharing footage of her jittery first rehearsal post-birth, Beyoncé keeps it real in the documentary. “I was 218 pounds the day I gave birth,” she says. Ten months later she emerged at Coachella in amazing form, but the documentary disproves the notion that any of it was easy. “I had to rebuild my body from cut muscles” after her C-section, she says. And the whole time “my mind wanted to be with the babies,” she says. “What people don’t see is the sacrifice.”

To get in Coachella shape, Beyoncé ate no carbs, no sugar, no dairy, no meat, no fish and drank no alcohol. “And I’m hungry,” she admits in the film, snacking on an apple. She also explained that she did soul cycle, regular workouts and dance rehearsals to drop the pounds.

She Had A Hard Time Learning The Choreography

Beyoncè maybe known for her dancing but she had a hard time getting the steps after her pregnancy. In the footage Bey struggles initially with the choreography. “This is why people don’t like to rehearse because you have to be humble,” she admits. She can be seen working with the choreographers, dancing alone and in the mirror until she has it perfected. It’s then that she reveals that she had real doubts if she had the stamina to pull this off. “There were days that I thought, you know, I’d never be the same. I’d never be the same physically, my strength and endurance would never be the same,” she says.

 

She Always Wanted To Attend An HBCU

“I always dreamed of going to an HBCU, but instead, “my college was Destiny’s Child and traveling around the world and life was my teacher,” she explained. She used to attend the “Battle of The Bands” and Homecoming festivities at Texas Southern University and that was the inspiration for her performance.

“When I decided to do Coachella, instead of me pulling out my flower crown, it was more important that I brought our culture to Coachella,” she says.

To achieve the scope of the collegiate-focused show, Beyoncé prepped the music design of Beychella for four months before an additional four months of dance rehearsals even started. “Homecoming” shares her prayer with the crew: “I ask that we’re able to touch people and give them hope. And make people feel beautiful and strong, and united.”

She’s Really The Boss

“I personally selected each dancer, every light, the material on the steps, the height of the pyramid, the shape of the pyramid,” she says in the film. “Every tiny detail had an intention.”

To get it all done she had three sound stages: one for dance rehearsals, one for music rehearsals and one for costumes. It’s also not called “a film by Beyoncé,” for postarity sake. Mrs. Carter spent 8 months editing the film to make sure it was completely true to her vision.

She was equally adamant about sound quality. At one point, the show’s stomps and drumline beats just weren’t translating past the stage, frustrating the headliner at a rehearsal. “Until I see some of my notes come alive, it doesn’t make sense for me to make more,” she says plainly in a team meeting. At that point, Bey excuses herself to go have an anniversary dinner with Jay, who sits beside her. Jay grins exiting with his boss wife. “OK guys,” he salutes with a grin.

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