Nearly eight months after dropping her dual-personality smash, I Am ... Sasha Fierce, [artist id="1236911"]Beyoncé[/artist] will finally bring the tour in support of the album to North America. The six week I Am ... Tour is slated to kick off on June 21 with a show at Madison Square Garden in New York and wind down with a four-night residency at Encore in the Wynn Las Vegas July 30-August 2.
According to a press release announcing the outing, the singer, currently on tour in Europe, will perform selections from the new album, as well as tunes from throughout her career in a high-tech production backed by her all-female band. Presale tickets for members of Beyoncé's fan club will be available on Monday (April 20) and general-public sales will begin on April 25.
In a recent interview with The Associated Press, Beyoncé said one of the hardest parts of the tour is squeezing a decade's worth of hits into a two-hour show and performing the songs in designer Thierry Mugler's elaborate costumes.
"I'm never gonna go onstage or do a video and not work until my feet are blistered, and until I'm basically, I can't walk any more," she said. "I always give, and I do that because I know how lucky I am, to do my job." She promised that the new tour will be more "emotional" than her 2007 outing because of the nature of the I Am portion of the double album. "That portion was a lot more real and raw and more sensitive," she explained. "The best part about this tour is I'm working with Thierry Mugler, who is an icon and a legend, and I've been a fan."
She also expressed frustration that snippets of the show have popped up online, ruining, she thinks, some of the surprise of the concert experience and possibly convincing some fans not to attend. "It's great because people can get a little sneak peek and say, "Oh, I wanna come to the show," or, "I don't wanna go to that show," [laughs] and I'm fans of people so I go on there and check it out too. But you put so much of your heart and time into the wardrobe ... it's kind of unfortunate that people can see the show months before you get into their city, but that's life."
Though fans responded enthusiastically to the long-awaited tour news over the weekend, Beyoncé's site was peppered with requests by disappointed supporters — from Boston; Anchorage, Alaska; Tampa, Florida; St. Louis and Montreal — who begged her to come to their towns.
The dates for the I Am ... Tour, according to Beyoncé's Web site:
» 6/21 - New York @ Madison Square Garden
» 6/24 - Washington @ Verizon Center
» 6/26 - Philadelphia @ Wachovia Center
» 6/27 - Greensboro, NC @ Greensboro Coliseum Complex
» 6/29 - Ft. Lauderdale, FL @ BankAtlantic Center
» 7/1 - Atlanta @ Philips Arena
» 7/3 - New Orleans @ Essence Music Festival at Louisiana Superdome
» 7/4 - Houston @ Toyota Center
» 7/5 - Dallas @ American Airlines Center
» 7/7 - Phoenix @ US Airways Center
» 7/9 - Sacramento, CA @ ARCO Arena
» 7/10 - Oakland, CA @ Oracle Arena
» 7/11 - Anaheim, CA @ Honda Center
» 7/13 - Los Angeles @ Staples Center
» 7/16 - Minneapolis @ Target Center
» 7/17 - Chicago @ United Center
» 7/18 - Auburn Hills, MI @ Palace of Auburn Hills
» 7/23 - Uncasville, CT @ Mohegan Sun
» 7/30-8/2 - Las Vegas @ Encore Theater at Wynn Las Vegas