The Super Bowl show, an event that marks the year with incredible spectacles and jaw-dropping performances finally arrived this past sunday.
We all remember Lady Gaga’s iconic entrance from her performance in 2016 or last year’s eccentric and unexpected duo of Shakira and Jlo, even if different artists with very distinctive styles we can all agree that they were what we envisioned for this awaited show.
This year’s Super Bowl which also marks the NFL’s 55th anniversary was an ensemble of unique performances from a variety of artists that altered from the traditional characteristics of the so waited show. Starting with H.E.R’s performance of “America the Beautiful” played with the contemporary sounds on electric guitar and continuing with Eric Church and Jazmine Sullivan duet of “The Star-Spangled Banner” and The Weeknd’s entire show were unexpected yet pleasant surprises.
Erich Church and Jazmine Sullivan’s duet represented the first time in 15 years that the NFL chose to feature a collaborative version of the national anthem, as well as the first time that the two artists have performed together. Their rendition with electric sounds, church led tones and fireworks accompanying the moment left us and the crowd speechless and ready for the next show.
Many of us were afraid that the particular R&B genre of the artist wouldn’t match the atmosphere of the event and wouldn’t make enough of an impact as previous shows, but let us admit that The Weeknd pulled it off.
The show started with Abel Tesfaye coming out of a cityscape surrounded by a red-eyed choir and instrumentalists complementing his red sequined look singing in the notes of Starboy. The scenario was impactful with futuristic neon visuals, dark stylistic choices, and a noticeable touch of Michael Jackson’s influence via Abel’s outfit, dance moves and even dramatic lights. The performance continued with a medley of his biggest hits, songs varied from “Can’t Feel My Face” to “Earned It” and his more recent release “Blinding Lights”.
His vocals and personal performance reflected his talent and career development but the organisation of the show; the changing landscapes, the transition between a cityscape to a mirror maze and finally into the field surrounded by dancers covered in bandages were what characterised this show and sparked unbelief amongst the viewers.
This time the music was in the centre of the attention, with a limiting situation resulting from the current pandemic the Canadian artist still managed to preserve the magic of this event without the necessity of the so common stunts or marching bands. Proving the everyone who doubted his participation for this event wrong and probably making the Grammy’s realise their mistake in snubbing him in this past year’s nominations.
Words by Chiara Ferrari