It seems prayers have been answered: RiRi will make a highly-anticipated return to the stage in 2023.
On Sunday, September 25, news broke that Rihanna will not only be performing at the Super Bowl LVII halftime show, but she'll actually be headlining it. You can count on fans to be fastened to the couch, chips and guac at hand.
Earlier this year, the Rihanna Vogue interview suggested that the musician and beauty mogul would in fact be releasing new music after the birth of her baby, but it's not clear what she'll be performing when the time comes.
One thing's for sure, she intends to make a statement, as this is the NFL's first year embarking on a new deal with Apple Music as the primary sponsor of the halftime show instead of Pepsi.
"We’re excited to partner with Rihanna, Roc Nation and the NFL to bring music and sports fans a momentous show," Oliver Schusser, Apple’s vice president for Apple Music and Beats, said in a statement, according to The New York Times (opens in new tab).
Does this unexpected reveal mean that a new Rihanna album—what would be her first release since 2016—is also on the way? Looks like we're about to find out.
Rihanna super bowl halftime show—what you need to know
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When is the Super Bowl 2023?
Mark your calendars for February 12, 2023. RiRi is going to be busy, and you likely will be, too. Honestly, we've seem to have forgotten that this event is about sports now that Rihanna's news broke.
Fan reactions to Rihanna's announcement
But of course, fans flooded newsfeeds with thoughts about Rihanna's return—the excitement, the screams, the Fenty Beauty jokes!
Me when I saw the announcement of Rihanna headlining the superbowl #Rihanna #riri #Rihannasuperbowl pic.twitter.com/VTdfdQ7ZVpSeptember 25, 2022
Rihanna no Superbowl#Rihanna #RIHANNASUPERBOWL pic.twitter.com/uOPWRFjpv0September 25, 2022
After our 100 year wait for new #Rihanna music, making her return at the Super Bowl of all places just makes sense. Major.September 25, 2022
Has Rihanna performed at the Super Bowl halftime show before?
Although she was set to headline the 2019 halftime show, the singer told Vogue three years ago that she ultimately stepped down to show support for Colin Kaepernick, the quarterback who spurred support and controversy by taking a knee during the national anthem.
"I couldn’t dare do that," Rihanna told Vogue (opens in new tab) regarding her decision to back out. "For what? Who gains from that? Not my people. I just couldn’t be a sellout. I couldn’t be an enabler. There’s things within that organization that I do not agree with at all, and I was not about to go and be of service to them in any way."
When was the last time Rihanna performed?
Her halftime performance in 2023 will mark the end of a four-year hiatus. The last time Rihanna performed live was February 2019.
Rihanna new music
So, will Riri be debuting new tracks, replaying classics or doing some combo of the two? It's too soon to say, and she's not providing any hints, so here's hoping a positive mentality will manifest a new album.
In 2020, the musician and entrepreneur told British Vogue (opens in new tab) "I can’t say when I’m going to drop, but I am very aggressively working on music."
She followed up by confirming to Entertainment Tonight (opens in new tab) ahead of her pregnancy that she's sticking to her word.
"Well, yes, you’re still going to get music from me," she told the outlet. "Not a lullaby. My fans would kill me if they waited this long for a lullaby."
Though she's mum on the details, we at least have her word that more's on the way. In the meantime, we'll just be scanning the Fenty aisle over at Sephora.
Danielle is a writer for woman&home and My Imperfect Life, covering all-things news, lifestyle and entertainment.
The heart of her time at Future has been devoted to My Imperfect Life, where she's been attuned to the cosmos, new TV shows and relationship trends.
Before her time at Future, Danielle was the editor of Time Out New York Kids and a news editor at Elite Daily. Her work has also appeared in Domino, Chowhound, amNewYork and Newsday, among other outlets.
When Danielle is not working, you can usually find her reading a book, coffee at hand, or attempting a new recipe. (Recommendations always welcome!)
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