Rihanna has released a trailer promoting her upcoming performance at the Super Bowl LVII halftime show.
Uploaded by Apple Music — the Super Bowl halftime show’s new sponsor — on Friday (January 13), the 30-second clip finds RiRi silencing the chatter surrounding her years-long musical hiatus.
The video, dubbed “Rihanna Is Back,” begins with audio of fans, reporters and radio hosts counting the days since the release of her last album — 2,190 to be precise — while impatiently clamoring for her comeback.
Eventually, Rihanna — wearing a furry yellow jacket, silver jewelry and an elaborate braided hairstyle — steps out of the shadows and into a spotlight, immediately quelling the noise. She then brings her finger to her lips and hushes the audience.
The trailer fittingly ends with a brief snippet of “Needed Me,” from the singer’s last studio effort, 2016’s ANTI.
Super Bowl LVII takes place on February 12 at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona. Rihanna was announced as the halftime show headliner last September when she shared a cryptic photo on Instagram showing her tattooed arm holding aloft an NFL football.
In a press release, JAY-Z — who has served as the NFL’s live music entertainment strategist since 2019 and signed the singer to Def Jam in 2005 on the strength of her breakout hit “Pon de Replay” — hailed RiRi as a “generational talent.”
“Rihanna is a generational talent, a woman of humble beginnings who has surpassed expectations at every turn,” Hov said. “A person born on the small island of Barbados who became one of the most prominent artists ever. Self-made in business and entertainment.”
The performance will mark the Bajan billionaire’s first appearance at the Super Bowl and first major performance since the 2016 MTV Video Music Awards, where she delivered a career-spanning medley of hits to coincide with her receiving the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award.
While it remains unclear what fans can expect from the show, the 34-year-old confirmed in November that she’s working on a “special” project to coincide with the Big Game, although she suggested it won’t a new album.
“Super Bowl is one thing, new music is another thing. Do you hear that, fans?” she told the Associated Press. “Because I knew the second that I announced this, I said: ‘Oh my God, they’re going to think that my album is coming. I need to get to work!’
“I do have new music coming out, but we’ll see. Unrelated, unrelated, but a special project.”
While the mother-of-one has admitted she’s “nervous” about taking the Super Bowl stage, she has received advice from last year’s headliner, Dr. Dre, who delivered an all-star Hip Hop spectacle alongside Eminem, Snoop Dogg, Kendrick Lamar, 50 Cent and Mary J. Blige.
“Put the right people around you, and have fun,” he urged RiRi in an interview with Apple Music’s Ebro Darden last year. “That’s basically what it is, making sure you have the right creative people around you. She might want to look into some of the people that we used to do our show.”