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Rihanna has been on NFL’s Super Bowl halftime show radar for years

Oct 25, 2022, 8:00 PM | Updated: 8:12 pm

Pop music superstar Rihanna has been on the NFL’s Super Bowl halftime radar for years.

The two paths connected this year and she will perform at halftime of Super Bowl LVII in Glendale next February.

“We’ve always wanted to be able to do this with her, and the right time came along and we have the right people to execute it,” NFL Head of Music Seth Dudowsky told Dave Burns on KTAR’s Super Bowl Host Committee Show.

Dudowsky acknowledged that his team and his goal is to create memories for the viewer. It’s difficult — practically impossible — to find an artist that everybody likes.

“There are very few artists that cut through across the board that everybody can at least, if they don’t love, can respect and appreciate that they’re deserving of a platform and a stage like that,” Dudowsky said. “Those are the artists that, when it comes to halftime, we really focus on.

“Who are the artists that are undeniable that, even if you don’t follow them, you know their music? Or even if you don’t think you like the genre, you can’t deny that that’s a catchy song? … For years, Rihanna has been somebody that has been well deserving of that stage and that platform.”

But what goes into choosing the artist each season?

“There’s different events and moments that lend themselves to whether a specific demo we’re trying to attract or genres that make sense, regionality,” Dudowsky said. “But when you go up to the level of the Super Bowl and the Super Bowl halftime show, you’re really talking to everybody.”

The theme of regionality and genres is how shows like Jennifer Lopez and Shakira were set for Miami, or the show featuring Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Mary J. Blige, Eminem and Kendrick Lamar happened last season in Los Angeles.

This year, it’s Rihanna. However, Dudowsky teased the idea of guests despite not spoiling anything.

“I’m excited for fans to see some of the surprises we have in store,” he said.

Super Bowl LVII is scheduled for Feb. 12.

While north of three months away, there’s still work to be done for Dudowsky and his team to make sure this show meets expectations.

“The magic of the show is not just the scale of the production and how you fill a stadium. You put on a show that meets the expectations of the world and somehow raises the bar each year,” Dudowsky said. “We have to do it in a way that does not impact the game, the playing conditions, the field or any aspect of the football game.”

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Rihanna has been on NFL’s Super Bowl halftime show radar for years