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Impressions of a Halftime Show: Beyoncé wows Super Bowl XLVII.
Beyoncé lights up the Halftime show at SuperBowl XLVII Richard Mackson, USA Today Sports

Beyoncé lights up the
Halftime show at
SuperBowl XLVII
Richard Mackson,
USA Today Sports

Even if you don’t care for football or like the choice for the chosen act, you cannot deny the cultural spectacle that is the Super Bowl Halftime Show.

From Michael Jackson to The Boss and Prince, from every “classic” rock act that can still get on stage and perform, this show-of-shows has set a bar so high that it takes significant efforts to make a statement. Madonna did so last year, and Beyonce did not disappoint at Super Bowl 47.

Perhaps most impressive about the entire Halftime Show was the preparation that allowed the show to come off “just like rehearsal.” The two clues to this were the highly choreographed video content and the quite sizable set (designed by Bruce Rodgers of Tribe Inc.).

The coordination of these elements took major planning, having to include enough time for concept, creation, design, planning, building, shipping, rehearsing, and coordinating a host of other logistics to make it possible. From having a working stage available for pyro technicians, lighting designer (Al Gurdon), video content creator, dancers, band, and Queen B herself to develop the show, to actually figuring out how to get the thing broken into enough pieces to fit through the load-in doors, was a feat in itself.

New Orleans Superdome's halftime show lighting worked just fine.Richard Mackson, USA Today Sports

New Orleans Superdome’s halftime show lighting worked just fine.
Richard Mackson, USA Today Sports

You know that someone – be it the Executive Producer, the Artist, or some collective of the creative team – enthusiastically seized the opportunity to make something special.

Of note, the face silhouette outlines in light to form the edge of the stage, the use of the bird’s-eye camera position to shoot down on the video content imbedded in the stage, and the parachute material used to represent flowing hair, all impressed.

Stage design Bruce Rodgers, Tribe Inc. USA Today Sports

Stage design Bruce Rodgers, Tribe Inc.
USA Today Sports

One of the more clever ideas was when one section of the stage folded into an upright position to act as a backdrop. The use of video in this configuration to mimic the live choreography was flawless and genius. It was often hard to tell which “dancer” was live and which was video.

Destiny's Child reunion w/ Michelle Williams and Kelly Rowland Richard Mackson, USA Today Sports

Destiny’s Child reunion w/ Michelle Williams and Kelly Rowland
Richard Mackson, USA Today Sports

So yes, Beyonce was on point both in voice and dance form. The appearance of Michelle Williams and Kelly Rowland to reunite Destiny’s Child was a clear winner. Even the Kiss-influenced sparks flying out of the guitar were good for a laugh.

The energy and fun Beyoncé exuded through the entire set was infectious. Even if you don’t particularly care for her brand of music, there’s no denying that she knows how to work a stage. The results should put to rest any doubt of her ability to sing live.

Kirby Leem, USA Today Sports

Kirby Leem, USA Today Sports

With Mardi Gras and the Super Bowl basically going on at the same time, this had to be a big economic injection to the city of New Orleans. Other than the “lights out” issue, the city should be proud of the job they did hosting the game.