It’s almost here. The biggest sporting event of year is set for Sunday at Inglewood’s SoFi Stadium.
But, let’s be honest, many of us won’t be watching the Super Bowl because of football. Sure, the Rams will be playing at home and the Cincinnati Bengals haven’t been to the big game since 1989. But another huge draw will be the halftime show.
This year’s halftime show, like the two before it, is a collaboration between Pepsi, NFL and Jay-Z’s Roc Nation.
Their partnership has made for water cooler talk, and the 2020 show in Miami that featured performances from Shakira, Jennifer Lopez and Bad Bunny drew praise from Latinos across the country.
Sunday’s show will be a homecoming for several of the performers.
Here’s how this year’s halftime show will pay tribute to the City of Angels.
Who is performing?
First off, let’s look at who will be performing during the show.
The NFL announced its “epic,” star-studded lineup for the big event last September. Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Eminem, Mary J. Blige and Kendrick Lamar will take the stage at SoFi Stadium Sunday.
In January, the league released a trailer guaranteed to pump you up.
The preview features each artist being notified of their participation in the show and making their way to L.A. while their individual hits play in the background. It features highways and streets of Los Angeles, as well as the picturesque downtown skyline, the ocean and, of course, SoFi Stadium.
The nearly 4-minute trailer closes with unforgettable Dre and Tupac song “California Love.”
Dre, Lamar and Snoop Dogg are from Los Angeles County: Dre and Lamar grew up in Compton, while Snoop Dogg hails from Long Beach.
Dre and N.W.A put West Coast gangsta rap on the map, and he went on to sign hip-hop heavy hitters such as Lamar, Eminem and 50 Cent through Dre’s record label Aftermath Entertainment. Additionally, Dre has collaborated with each artist, and has produced both Eminem and Blige.
“The opportunity to perform at the Super Bowl Halftime show, and to do it in my own backyard, will be one of the biggest thrills of my career,” Dre said in a statement announcing the performers.
During a news conference Thursday, Dre said he hopes the performance will open the door to more hip-hop artists being featured in future halftime shows. He promised an “exciting” and “dope” show.
“It’s crazy that it took all of this time for us to be recognized,” Dre said. “I think we’re going to do a fantastic job. We’re going to do it so big that they can’t deny us anymore in the future.”
Earlier this week, Snoop Dogg told The Associated Press that performing at the halftime show is a “dream come true,” and that the show will be important for the legacy of hip-hop culture.
“I’m still thinking I’m in a dream because I can’t believe that they will let a real hip-hop artist grace the stage in an NFL Super Bowl,” he said. “We’re just going to wait for that moment and put something together that’s spectacular, and do what we’re known for doing and add on to the legacy.”
Also taking the stage Sunday are Inglewood natives Mary Mary, who will be performing with the LA Phil’s Youth Orchestra Los Angeles. Their song, “Lift Every Voice and Sing” will be conducted by Thomas Wilkins, the principal conductor of the LA Phil’s Hollywood Bowl Orchestra, USA Today reported.
Angelenos will be behind the scenes at Sunday’s performance, too, as area residents were called upon to apply to be a part of the show.
About 500 people were expected be hired to serve as “Field Team” members to assist in assembling the stage for the event and moving scenic elements on and off the field for the performance.
So whether you’ll be enjoying the game from home, a bar or at SoFi, be sure to check out how the L.A.-centric halftime show celebrates the City of Angels. To quote Lamar’s “The Recipe:” “What more can I say? Welcome to L.A.”