The anticipation is finally over as Rihanna made a highly anticipated return to the stage with a performance at the Super Bowl Halftime Show. The Feb 12th event marked her first performance in over five years and was a spectacle to behold. The nine-time Grammy winner kept her promise to represent all eras of her musical career, calling the halftime show a celebration of her entire catalog during an earlier press conference at Apple Music.
Rihanna revealed that crafting the setlist was the most difficult aspect of the entire production, even more so than coordinating hundreds of people to build and dismantle the stage quickly. “That was the toughest part,” she stated. “The challenge is that you only have 13 minutes to perform, so you’re trying to fit 17 years of work into that limited time.” The singer explained that she went through 39 different setlists, each with modifications until she finally settled on the final version. “Unfortunately, some songs had to be cut due to time constraints, but I think we did a good job of narrowing it down,” she said.
Here’s every song Rihanna performed during the Super Bowl Halftime Show:
1. “Bitch Better Have My Money”
Perhaps unexpectedly, Rihanna opened her Super Bowl set with “Bitch Better Have My Money” — but not before a simple intro asking, “What’s My Name?,” riffing off her 2010 hit.
2. “Where Have You Been”
The star seamlessly transitioned into her 2011 Grammy-nominated hit, adding new details into the epic bass drop, including an interpolation of “Cockiness (Love It).”
3. “Only Girl (In the World)”
RiRi kept the dance party going by storming into the chorus of her Grammy-winning single.
4. “We Found Love”
She ended the dance segment with “We Found Love,” which remains one of her longest-running Billboard No. 1s to date, incorporating the iconic hook from her 2010 hit “S&M.”
5. “Rude Boy”
Rihanna added more bounce to “Rude Boy,” giving it a danceable remix treatment that included a sample of her 2016 Anti deep cut “Kiss It Better.”
She then seamlessly transitioned into her Anti nit “Work” — Drake appearance not included.
7. “Wild Thoughts”
Rihanna’s last performance was at the 2018 Grammy Awards, where she joined DJ Khaled to sing their “Wild Thoughts” collaboration. For the Super Bowl, she did it solo.
8. “Pour It Up”
RiRi used the intro of her 2011 hit “Birthday Cake” to lead into “Pour It Up.”
9. “All of the Lights”
Rihanna proved she did not need Kanye West to perform the anthemic chorus of his 2010 hit.
10. “Run This Town”
Jay-Z also did not come out to perform “Run This Town” with her as widely predicted, but it sounded just as empowering as ever.