HBO Makes It Easier (and Cheaper) to See Beyoncé and Jay-Z’s Tour


If tickets to Beyoncé and Jay-Z’s “On The Run” tour just weren’t in your budget this summer, or perhaps sold out at your local stadium before you even sat down at your computer, you’re still in luck. HBO will air a special taping of the famous couple’s collaborative tour on September 20.

The network had previously announced the special — which marks the superstars’ first HBO concert event — in early July during the Television Critics Association press tour. But an official premiere date was only just revealed in a quick video teaser, posted to Instagram this week. The clip also gives viewers a sneak peek at what to expect during the exclusive presentation, including black and white behind-the-scenes footage of the artists getting ready to make their entrance on stage.

According to the network, the “On the Run” concert special will be taped during the September 12 and 13 shows in Paris, the only two international dates of the entire tour. It will feature the duo performing more than 40 songs. “This is a major musical event that belongs on HBO,” the network’s programming president Michael Lombardo said in a statement, according to Deadline. “It’s going to be a night to remember.”

Some fans might grouse that the experience just won’t be the same without the sound of fellow Bey and Jay lovers screaming in excitement next to them. But Lombardo assures viewers that the concert is just as lively on the small screen as it is in person, in large part due to its high-quality production.

“[The] coordination is not just remarkable, it’s the absolute best way that two of the world’s best performers can deliver a show that proves why they are on top together,” he said of the tour.

It seems HBO is as big of fans of Beyoncé and Jay-Z as the rest of the world is. While this is the first time the network is documenting the entirety of one of their tour’s shows on screen, they’ve shown plenty of support for both singers’ projects in the past. The channel was the first to premiere Jay-Z’s music video, Picasso Baby: A Performance Art Film. It also aired Beyoncé’s documentary special, Life Is But a Dream, and is currently airing Beyoncé: X10, a ten-part series of professionally shot performances from the artist’s “The Mrs. Carter World Tour” that air every Sunday before the new episode of True Blood.

It’s not surprising that the network would also want to air the couple’s first ever joint tour, particularly given its widely successful ticket sales. In mid-June, a week before the “On The Run” opening show in Miami, Forbes (which also recently named Beyoncé the most powerful celebrity on its Celebrity 100 list) revealed that the tour was on pace to sell almost 1 million tickets and gross close to $100 million, which would make it the second most successful concert run of all time based off gross revenue per show. Not to mention one of its prior Beyoncé-related projects, Life Is But a Dream, earned the channel record-breaking ratings. The network is clearly hoping that the couple’s dedicated fan base will pay the same kind of attention to their concert special and give it another big win.

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