Rihanna’s return to the stage is just days away as headliner for Apple Music’s debut Super Bowl Halftime Show. Ahead of her highly-anticipated performance, the Bajan legend sat with Nadeska Alexis to talk how she’s been preparing for the world’s biggest stage after a lengthy hiatus and as a new mom.
“I have yet to sleep. We were working at the venue all last night and I kinda just stayed there and ended up in a prep and somehow, I’m here at a press conference right now […] I’ve been so focused on the Super Bowl that I forgot my birthday’s coming up. I totally forgot about Valentine’s Day. It’s a lot of preparation, a lot of moving parts,” Rih stated during her opening remarks.
“It’s literally like three to four hundred people breaking the stage down and building it back up and getting it out in eight minutes. It’s almost impossible [but] we’re excited to do the Super Bowl,” continued the Fenty mogul, later hinting that later today, she will embark on the most “crucial” rehearsal to-date.
The doting new mother’s son factored into her decision to perform during the Halftime Show. “When you become a mom, there’s something that just happens where you feel you can take on the world. You can do anything […] So, as scary as that was ’cause I haven’t been on the stage in seven years, there’s something exhilarating about the challenge of it all and it’s important for me to do this this year. It’s important for representation and it’s important for my son to see that.”
Overall, Rihanna intends to maximize her 13-minute set and described it as a “celebration of [her] catalogue in the best way that [she] could have put it together.” She even hinted that there are 39 versions of the set list.
In addition to her teasing the performance, Apple Music unveiled a special tribute to Rih’s hometown titled “Run This Town,” a play on her 2009 collab with Jay-Z and Kanye West.
Watch the full press conference, including a segment with openers Babyface set to sing “America The Beautiful,” Sheryl Lee Ralph set to sing “Lift Every Voice And Sing,” and Chris Stapleton set to sing the National Anthem, here.
Super Bowl LVII with the Philadelphia Eagles facing off against the Kansas City Chiefs takes place on Sunday, Feb. 12 at 3:30 p.m. PT.