Rihanna has shared a teaser for her upcoming Super Bowl LVII halftime show performance. The 30-second video, which was shared by Apple Music (the new sponsor of the halftime show) on Friday (January 13), shows Rihanna addressing the speculation about her prolonged absence from the music scene.
The video, entitled “Rihanna Is Back,” opens with the sounds of fans, journalists and radio hosts eagerly counting the days since the release of her last album, which is 2,190 days. The crowd is excited and eagerly awaiting her return. Rihanna then appears, wearing a striking yellow furry jacket, shiny jewelry and an intricate braided hairstyle, and steps into the spotlight. With a finger to her lips, she hushes the crowd and the trailer ends with a short clip from “Needed Me,” from her last album, ANTI which was released in 2016.
Super Bowl LVII will take place on February 12th at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona. Rihanna was revealed as the halftime show headliner last September, after posting a photo on Instagram of her tattooed arm holding an NFL football. JAY-Z, who has been the NFL’s live music entertainment strategist since 2019 and signed Rihanna to Def Jam in 2005, praised her as a “generational talent.” He said in a press release, “Rihanna is a self-made woman of humble beginnings from Barbados who has exceeded expectations in business and entertainment.”
Rihanna will be performing at the Super Bowl for the first time, and it will be her first major performance since the 2016 MTV Video Music Awards, where she performed a medley of her greatest hits and received the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award. Although it is uncertain what the performance will entail, the 34-year-old singer announced in November that she is working on a “special” project to coincide with the event, but she did not mention that it would be a new album.
Rihanna told the Associated Press that while her upcoming halftime performance at the Super Bowl may be a major event, it is separate from any new music she may have in the works. She said, “I do have new music coming out, but we’ll see. Unrelated, unrelated, but a special project.” Additionally, it has been reported that the halftime show will be turned into a documentary by Apple+ who has allegedly paid millions for the exclusive rights. Rihanna has expressed nerves about the performance but has received advice from last year’s halftime show headliner Dr. Dre.
Put the right people around you, and have fun,” he urged RiRi in an interview with Apple Music’s Ebro Darden last year. “That’s basically what it is, making sure you have the right creative people around you. She might want to look into some of the people that we used to do our show.