Rihanna has already evolved into an immensely successful singer, a business mogul with a net worth of more than $1 billion and, as of last year, a mom.
On Sunday, the multihyphenate added another accomplishment to the checklist: Super Bowl halftime headliner.
Taking the State Farm Stadium stage in Glendale, Arizona, with her most visible outing in years, Rihanna stormed through a vibrant production that spotlighted her flexible R&B grooves coupled with infectious pop hooks. And, of course, her distinctive fashion style.
Rihanna, who turns 35 next week, started on a hovering platform with "Bitch Better Have My Money," as a cadre of dancers in while jumpsuits shimmied below her. Quick segues into "Where Have You Been" and "Only Girl (In the World)" led to a fireworks display during "We Found Love," her fizzy banger with Calvin Harris.
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Striding among her dancers with liquid moves on the red-lighted stage to match her jumpsuit, which highlighted what appeared to be a baby bump, Rihanna's pulsing hits flowed in succession, including "Rude Boy," "Wild Thoughts" and a seductive "Work."
Intricate camera work, including a shot of the stage upside down, added visual flair for TV viewers as Rihanna strode through "Pour It Up" and eventually added some twerking.
A quick powdering of her nose prefaced "All of the Lights," her 2010 hit with Kanye West as even more dancers – and maybe some lucky members of the Rihanna Navy? – stormed the field.
The opening notes of "Run This Town" that flowed into "Umbrella" suggested it might be time for a Jay-Z cameo, but only Rihanna's backing band and that flock of dancers surrounded her as she again went airborne on her hovering platform.
The stadium alighted for, of course, "Diamonds," which she sang with conviction while seemingly enjoying the sparkly light show surrounding her.
The Barbados-born superstar owns a stash of multi-platinum singles (among them, 9 million for “Work” and 8 million for “Umbrella,” according to the Recording Industry Association of America), and her Super Bowl debut squeezed as many of her 14 No. 1 hits as possible into the 13-minute spectacle.
Rihanna's last album, "Anti," arrived in 2016, leading to speculation from fans that new work – or at least her first tour tour since the album's release – would accompany her Super Bowl debut.
Since "Anti," the nine-time Grammy Award winner had appeared at the 2018 Grammy ceremony to perform DJ Khaled’s “Wild Thoughts,” but mostly dedicated her time to boosting the profile of her Fenty Beauty cosmetic brand, which she started in 2017. Between the success of Fenty and Rihanna’s Savage x Fenty lingerie line, which bowed in 2018, the singer and businesswoman born Robyn Fenty has netted an estimated worth of $1.7 billion, according to Forbes.
Last May, she gave birth to her first child, a son, with longtime beau A$AP Rocky. Though she’s mostly kept details about her child private, Rihanna shared a TikTok video in December that showed the baby smiling and yawning in the backseat of a car.
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