Rihanna Will Headline The Super Bowl 57 Halftime Show

26 September 2022 | 9:14 am | Brenton Harris

The show will be Rihanna's first public performance since appearing alongside DJ Khaled at the 2018 Grammy Awards.

Rihanna has been announced as the headliner for the Super Bowl 57 halftime show.  The NFL revealed that the Barbadian superstar responsible for 31 US top-ten hits, will headline what promises to be a spectacular entertainment lineup at the event which will take place at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona on Sunday 12 February, local time. 

The announcement was made via simultaneous posts to social media by Rihanna, Roc Nation, the NFL and sponsor Apple Music. Rihanna's post simply featured a photo of her own hand holding up an NFL ball, leaving announcements from the NFL, Roc Nation and Apple Music to fill in the blanks for those who didn't quite understand the inference.

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The show will be Rihanna's first public performance since appearing alongside DJ Khaled at the 2018 Grammy Awards.  The billionaire artist and entrepreneur has reportedly turned down offers to perform the 2018, 2019 and 2020 Super Bowl halftime shows. It is not known yet why Rihanna decided now was the time to accept the NFL's offer and there's no indication yet as to whether it is part of a broader comeback plan, however, she has been teasing that her first new material since 2016's Anti could be on the way. 

Interestingly, Rihanna had previously publicly rejected the NFL's 2020 overtures in protest of the NFL's treatment of controversial player Colin Kaepernick, following his decision to kneel during the US national anthem at games in protest of the USA's current and historical racial inequality and police brutality. At the time, Rihanna stated to Vogue "I couldn’t dare do that. For what?”  Who gains from that? Not my people. I just couldn’t be a sellout. I couldn’t be an enabler. There are things within that organization that I do not agree with at all, and I was not about to go and be of service to them in any way." 

Jay-Z's company, Roc Nation (who Rihanna has been signed to since 2014), has since taken over the production of the halftime show and that is thought to be the change that convinced Rihanna to say yes this time around. Speaking upon the announcement Jay-Z offered "Rihanna is a generational talent, a woman of humble beginnings who has surpassed expectations at every turn." “A person born on the small island of Barbados who became one of the most prominent artists ever. Self-made in business and entertainment.”

If the past few Super Bowl shows are anything to judge it by, we could all be in for a spectacular display featuring a collection of Rihanna's most known hits.

Rihanna's acceptance of the offer comes after Taylor Swift reportedly turned down an offer to perform at Super Bowl 57. Swift apparently would prefer to finish working on re-recording her Big Machine albums. 

This year's Super Bowl halftime show was a stunning one, with Dr Dre, Eminem, Snoop Dogg, Mary J Blige, 50 Cent and Kendrick Lamar providing a visual and musical spectacle in Los Angeles.