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Winnie Harlow in ‘Lemonade’
Winnie HarlowStill from Beyonce’s Lemonade (The Visual Album)

Winnie Harlow says she had no idea what Lemonade was

The model, who appeared in the video, reveals she only knew it was called ‘Lemonade’

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past few days, you’ll know that Beyoncé has dropped an hour-long visual album entitled Lemonade. As well as 12 new songs, some killer looks (by brands including Roberto Cavalli by Peter Dundas, Hood By Air, Yeezy, Gucci and couture Givenchy), the video featured several influential black women.

The cast included Hunger Games actor and former Dazed cover star Amandla StenbergBeasts of the Southern Wild actress Quvenzhané Wallis, six-time Wimbledon ladies’ singles champion Serena Williams, Disney Channel star Zendaya, and Wanda Johnson, the mother of Oscar Grant III (an unarmed 22-year-old who was killed by a Bart police officer in 2009). 

The cast also included “vitiligo spokesmodel” Winnie Harlow who, speaking in an interview with Cosmopolitan, reveals that she and her co-stars had no idea what the project was. “I think after the filming, we all didn’t really know exactly what the project was, but we could sense how epic it was. Like of course we were part of the scenes, but we just weren’t told what exactly was going on, you know?” she says. “I just literally only knew it was called ‘Lemonade.’”

Speaking on how her involvement in the video, which has since been hailed as “a love letter to black women”, came about, Harlow says, “(Beyoncé’s assistant) gave me a call and told me that they’d been trying to reach me for a while now and wanted to know if I could fly out to New Orleans the next day, and I was like, ‘I mean sure, I guess, that’s cool,’ still the whole time not really knowing what the project was. But who can say no to Beyoncé? So I went.”

Harlow goes on to say how she had to keep the whole thing firmly under wraps: “It was 100 per cent a secret. I didn’t talk to anyone like my friends; I didn’t message anyone on set just because I wanted to be focused on working. But once I got home, I told my sister, I told my mom, because they were so worried. They had no idea where I was.”

Read the full interview here.