Explaining the Beyoncé "Everybody on Mute War" During the Renaissance Tour | Miami New Times


Miami, Please STFU When Beyoncé Says "Mute"

This is a public service announcement to help you avoid the humiliation that comes with being that person.
Beyoncé wants you to STFU when she says "mute."
Beyoncé wants you to STFU when she says "mute." Photo by Mason Poole
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Have you ever seen a crowd going apeshit? Beyoncé has. She's seen it a million times. She and her husband wrote a whole song about it. Five years ago this month, I saw it too, when I stood in the nosebleeds at Hard Rock Stadium, equal parts riveted and terrified as the stands shook beneath my feet as Jay-Z and Beyoncé performed "Apeshit" during the Miami stop of their joint On the Run II Tour.

Know what Beyoncé hasn't seen? She's never seen an audience of tens of thousands of people stand in complete silence in front of her. Typically, this scenario would be a performer's worst nightmare, but Beyoncé is a well-documented rule-breaker, and for a brief moment during her Renaissance World Tour shows, she's looking to witness exactly this — the kind of chilling silence most singers spend their entire careers avoiding.

In a case of the TikTok-ification of real life, the phenomenon now known as the "Everybody on Mute War" or "Everybody on Mute Challenge" began organically, as the Beyhive organized online to create a moment of silence during "Energy," when Beyoncé sings, "Big wave in the room, the crowd gon' move/Look around everybody on mute."

The challenge started to pick up steam about a month into the tour, and by the 16th show, at the Amsterdam concert on June 16, at least one fan could be heard screaming at their peers, "Shut up, shut up, shut up!" The self-own was captured on camera as a cautionary tale of what not to do when Beyoncé says "mute."
Two months later, the challenge has become an all-out battle between cities, with Beyoncé declaring winners herself — first Washington, D.C.; then Charlotte; then Atlanta.

One of her security guards at the D.C. show went viral for being visibly impressed with the crowd's "mute" participation. He had to set his Instagram to private after attracting too much buzz from the Beyhive.
Still, someone in the audience inevitably misses the memo at each show, eliciting jeers and death stares from the Beyhive — and on a couple of occasions, even from Queen Bey and her dancers themselves.
That's where we come in, Miami. This is a public service announcement to help you avoid the humiliation that comes with being that person when Beyoncé brings her Renaissance World Tour to Hard Rock Stadium on Friday, August 18.

Miami, please, I am begging you: STFU when Beyoncé says "mute." Don't be that guy. Spread the word.

I sadly have little faith that my beloved hometown — a city that ignores turn signals, club curfews, and party start times — can dethrone Atlanta, but I so desperately want to be wrong.

Atlanta was damn-near silent during this moment at her third show in the city this week, but there were still some errant woos out there. Could we do better? To be honest, I really don't think so. But Miami, I challenge you to prove me wrong. I know it goes against our very nature to keep our shit together when Beyoncé is onstage, but when the Queen says "stop," the world should stop.

Beyoncé. 8 p.m. Friday, August 18, at Hard Rock Stadium, 347 Don Shula Dr., Miami Gardens; 305-943-8000; hardrockstadium.com. Sold out.
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