It’s the question we’ve been asking since pandemic lockdown began: what is Beyoncé doing? Beyoncé was self-isolating even before everyone else started isolation. She’s half self-isolated most of the time anyway – as we all know, our Queen keeps it undercover, emerging only when she’s good and ready, so that when she does final descend from her heavenly palace to check in on us now and again, her visits feel like a unicorn sighting. And it’s not just civilians who feel this way. Even celebrities freak out over Beyoncé.
I felt the earth move last night, the way it only moves where Beyoncé is concerned. It started lighting up during the 8pm hour, when the Disney Family Singalong started. First it was the Twitter buzz. Then my phone blew up. When I realised that it was because of Her, that She had made an appearance, I texted Kathleen and Duana. Kathleen started text-screaming, as she does. Duana, who is normally chill, responded as quickly as she’s ever replied to any of my messages:
In Duana speak, that’s panic.
Because OF COURSE it was a surprise. OF COURSE they didn’t announce it ahead of time. OF COURSE this is how she would have wanted it. Apparently it was Bob Iger who reached out personally with the request.
Did you notice that during the Disney Family Singalong, since it’s a SINGALONG, they had the song lyrics running at the bottom of the screen during each number… save one? Not during Beyoncé’s performance. Why would anyone sing along during Beyoncé’s performance? Nobody wants to hear from you, or me, anyone of us, during Beyoncé’s performance, OK?
Oh and also, she shot it so that they couldn’t get any text up there without covering her face. Everybody else was probably given specific instructions (Buzzfeed has an article about how they put everything together – the studio sent equipment over to talent and they were troubleshooting with the artists over Zoom) on how to film their parts. Beyoncé, I would imagine, was like, I have what I need and you’re gonna get what you’re gonna get, don’t be giving me any instructions. And I’ll even look like an animated character while I’m on camera just to make it all come together.
Now who’s complaining?
And then there’s the song choice. It’s exactly the right song for her to be singing – and for ONLY her to be singing. “When You Wish Upon a Star” is the Holy Grail of Disney songs. If it was an object, it’d be locked up in the Disney Vatican, with the most expensive security system ever invented, preserved by alien technology temperature control. Disney is very, very particular about their brand and they are the most particular about this piece of music. They don’t just hand it over to anyone, as confirmed by Darren Criss:
Fun fact: asked if I could do When You Wish Upon A Star. They said â€œthatâ€™s impossible to get clearedâ€ which was either the nicest way to tell me â€œplease donâ€™tâ€ or it was actually true and itâ€™s just nothing is impossible if Beyonce wants to do it.— Darren Criss (@DarrenCriss) April 17, 2020
“Nothing is impossible if Beyoncé wants to do it.” Nothing is impossible when Beyoncé’s telling Bob Iger that she wants to do it and that’s the only song she wants to do.
Beyoncé promised us that it’s all going to be OK. It’s exactly what I needed to hear.
Yours in gossip,