Super Bowl Halftime show attracts more viewers than usual

The Super Bowl is one of the biggest events in American sports, but lately its halftime show has attracted as much attention as the game itself.

“The Super Bowl differs from a regular football game because it includes a concert and the championship title,” said Viviana Plaza, graduate Business student. 

Singer Rihanna’s 13-minute halftime performance attracted 118.7 million viewers, over five million more than the Kansas City Chiefs and Philadelphia Eagles averaged throughout the game. 

“People who would normally never watch a sports game are excited to turn on their TVs and hope their favorite artists play their favorite hits,” said Plaza. “When Rihanna announced her performance at the Super Bowl, she became one of the faces of the game.

When people heard Rihanna, they thought about the songs she might perform, the outfit she might wear, any guest performance she might have, and surprises.”

The halftime show has become a pop culture phenomenon, reaching an extensive demographic in recent years. 

“In 2020, Shakira and Jennifer Lopez brought together the Hispanic and Latino community and those who enjoy Latin music,” said Plaza. “Last year, Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Eminem, Mary J. Blige, Kendrick Lamar and 50 Cent graced the stage and brought together fans of rap and hip hop and of many different age groups. 

“In just three years, fans were able to enjoy the popular music of rap/hip hop, latin pop, and pop artists,” she said. 

The engagement continues after the performance when viewers turn to social media. The drive of interest and discussion cements the performance as a part of mainstream culture. Among the most talked about brands, Rihanna’s Fenty Beauty generated over 852,000 engagements on Twitter during the game under the hashtag #FentyBeauty, due to her performance.

“As someone who doesn’t regularly watch football but enjoys music, the half-time show provides an opportunity for people like myself to be able to enjoy an American pastime with my family,” said Plaza. “Whether you watch for the fireworks, the multimillion dollar commercials with celebrity appearances, the game itself, or the halftime show, millions around the world tune in to watch the spectacle on live television.”