by Beth Shapouri
First, of her new scent (a mix of orchid, bergamot, golden apricot, freesia, cashmere musk and vetiver) Beyoncé has said, "The spirit of Rise encourages women to be all that we are," which sounds potentially like just something someone might say in passing and not really mean. But I'm telling you, judging by the feeling backstage, this woman means it. You could tell the entire crew spoke about her, they genuinely love and respect her. And as for encouraging people to reach their potential, turns out she can be a pretty tough boss when it comes to giving "notes" (meaning things she liked and didn't like during a night's performance).
* The crew didn't know that Beyonce was dropping a surprise album. They knew she was working on something, but they found out on Twitter just like everyone else that she snuck her new songs on iTunes.
* Blue Ivy twerks! Well, something like it at least. The dancers told us she loves to dance and one of her signature moves is to stick her booty out and wave it around in a twerk-esque fashion.
* Her backup singers (who have all been traveling with her for years) say motherhood has made the singer even more maternal. One told us, "She's always been caring, but now it's like Heeeey...how's [your son] JJ?"
* On a normal night, the Mamas take an hour-and-a-half to get ready, but in a time crunch, they can be stage-ready in 30 minutes.
* Beyoncé is a such a perfectionist, she watches a video of the show almost every night, according to her dancers.
* The dancers have seven costume changes throughout the show.
* The crew likes to play little pranks to make Beyonce laugh. For instance, on the last tour, a dancer shoved a towel down the back of her pants to make her booty extra "Bootylicious" to dance to the song.
* The costume tailors have to repair the clothes every night. All that dancing is hard on the fabrics, and although they switch out the hidden zippers and any delicate hooks to help them stand up to wear and tear ("It comes as couture and we have to make it a costume"), they still get ripped up--and they don't keep backups!
* Sometimes Beyoncé likes to mix things up and ad lib dance moves. Her dancers have just learned to roll with the punches. "We just have to stay on our toes--we just make sure we're always watching her and each other," one of them revealed.
* The dancers were wrapping toys for a toy drive and eating fried chicken--yes, fried chicken--a couple of hours before showtime. After seeing the show I can testify that they work so hard, they deserve some fried chicken.
- Arts & Entertainment