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WATCH: Black Expats Shut Down Seoul, South Korea With This ‘Before I Let Go’ Performance

By DeAnna Taylor

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After the release of Queen Bey’s ‘Homecoming’ documentary, we all went crazy over the release of the live album from the event. While many of the songs were known, Bey threw in a surprise rendition of the cookout classic, ‘Before I Let Go.’

As with any catchy song these days, a dance challenge soon followed. People all over the world began choreographing their own routines to the Queen’s song and posting it to social media.

That was the case for a group of Black expats all the way in Seoul, South Korea.

Photo courtesy of Nathalie Calderon

Rebecca Chapman and her cousin Courtney learned the choreography that was introduced by Chris Smith when the idea to make their own challenge arose.

During a group dinner, Courtney brought the idea up to the table to take on the challenge in Seoul. Nathalie Calderon, a longtime Beyhive member, was up for the challenge.

Related: What It Means To Be Black In South Korea


Nathalie and Rebecca took charge and began to plan the eventful day that brought out dozens of Black and brown folks, some traveling over 3 hours, together to perform the routine at a historical site in Seoul.

Photo courtesy of Nathalie Calderon

“We didn’t set out to make history, but rather enlighten the world that black magic is everywhere, even in Korea,” Nathalie told Travel Noire. “What
better way to depict that than embracing our culture in front of one of the most iconic landmarks in Korea, Gyeongbokgung Palace. Just walking there together in a group, people stopped and stared. Once the music started,
cameras were out, traffic stopped, and the audience watched in awe.”

On June 8th, the group set out to give the performance of their life, all while just taking in the moment and having fun.

“We all shared in a moment where nothing else mattered but us. Everything we were going through or had gone through, didn’t matter because what we set out to do was beyond that. We came together, we danced together, and we conquered together.”

You can watch the video below.


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Travel Noire

DeAnna Taylor

DeAnna Taylor is a criminal defense Attorney turned travel writer. The Charlotte native recently completed one year abroad working as an English teacher in South Korea. Her hobbies include fitness, traveling to new countries, and trying new foods.

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