By Chloe Chang
Photo by Ross D. Franklin
On Sunday, February 12th, Rihanna took the Super Bowl stage in Arizona to deliver a 13-minute performance of 12 of her hits! This was Rihanna's first performance since the 2018 Grammys.
Opening with "Bitch Better Have My Money," Rihanna stood almost 100 feet in the air on a hanging platform in a bright red jumpsuit. The artist's Super Bowl stage was heavily centered around these 7 floating platforms, and not only were they visually eye-catching, but they also had a practical football-related reason behind them. In an interview with Wired, the halftime show's production designer Bruce Rogers said that one purpose of the elevated platforms was to preserve the grass of the State Farm Arena. To keep the grass at the arena at the same density as it was before the halftime show, "the stages for this year’s show could only be about half the size they have been in previous years." Despite these limitations, Rihanna's stage still had a "wow factor" as the LED-lit platforms had different formations and lighting throughout the 13-minutes.
Photo by Robb Carr
On top of a stellar performance, Rihanna had multiple iconic moments. First, to the surprise of many, Rihanna was showcasing what appeared to be a new baby bump, resulting in fans racing to social media to speculate her pregnancy. Rihanna's representative later confirmed after the performance that the singer-songwriter is pregnant with her second child!
Rihanna also promoted her brands Fenty Beauty and SAVAGE X FENTY! Every backup dancer for the halftime show wore clothing pieces from SAVAGE X FENTY's loungewear and lingerie lines, now being showcased on the website. Some pieces included the "Savage x Cotton boxers" and the "Pin Up Low-Impact Sports Bra."
Photo by ESPN
Rihanna took a quick break during "All of the Lights" halfway through her show to direct attention to Fenty Beauty, putting on makeup in a moment that left viewers searching the Internet to find out what product she used.
To those who were used to the overtly grand halftime shows with special guests and costume changes, one might call Rihanna's performance simple. But the 13-minute show was chic and polished, and Rihanna held her own without any guests, dominating the stage with a stage presence that is expected from her years of experience. As the New York Times put it simply, "In essence, the event was [Rihanna's] appearance."
If you missed Rihanna's halftime show at this year's 57th Super Bowl at the State Farm Arena in Glendale, Arizona, you can watch a replay on the NFL's official Youtube channel!