Who performed the first Super Bowl Halftime Show? A brief history of the world’s most watched concert

INGLEWOOD, CALIFORNIA - FEBRUARY 13: The Vince Lombardi Trophy is held in the air after Super Bowl LVI at SoFi Stadium on February 13, 2022 in Inglewood, California. The Los Angeles Rams defeated the Cincinnati Bengals 23-20. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
INGLEWOOD, CALIFORNIA - FEBRUARY 13: The Vince Lombardi Trophy is held in the air after Super Bowl LVI at SoFi Stadium on February 13, 2022 in Inglewood, California. The Los Angeles Rams defeated the Cincinnati Bengals 23-20. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /
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The Super Bowl is one of the most-watch and most anticipated events each year. Now, it’s true most viewers tune in to see who will win, but a large amount of viewers are only it in for the Super Bowl Halftime Show. Has the Halftime Show always been as popular as it is today? Who performed the first Super Bowl Halftime Show?

Take it from someone who knows nothing about the NFL, the Super Bowl is always watched at my house. The TV is on, there are snacks, and the volume goes up during the Halftime Show. As for the rest of the event, we don’t pay too much attention to. Part of the fun in watching the Halftime Show live as it happens, is reacting to it with fellow viewers, both those in the living room with you and online.

The Super Bowl Halftime Show wasn’t always as exciting (or controversial, in some cases) as it is today. What are your most memorable performances? Before we dive into some Super Bowl Halftime Show highlights, let’s see who entertained audiences in the first Halftime Show.

Who performed the first Super Bowl Halftime Show?

The first Super Bowl took place at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum in Los Angeles, California, on Jan. 15, 1967, and saw the Green Bay Packers take on the Kansas City Chiefs for the championship title. The winner? The Green Bay Packers (35 to 10). But who performed?

The 1967 Halftime Show was performed by the University of Arizona Symphonic Marching Band, but also saw performances from the Grambling State University’s Marching Band and Anaheim High School’s drill team, as well as trumpeter Al Hirt. The setlist for this Halftime Show includes “The Liberty Bell March,” “This Is My Country,” and “The Sound of Music.”

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A brief history of the world’s most watched concert

The following year, the Grambling State University Marching Band returned as the headliner, followed by the Florida A&M University band along with local high school bands. Marching bands and similar small and local acts continued until New Kids on the Block performed in 1991, but it was still not considered a masterpiece of an event.

It wasn’t until Michael Jackson performed at the Super Bowl XXVII that the, well, game, changed. It goes without saying that Michael Jackson’s Halftime Show was tough to beat! Now, here are some memorable Halftime Show performances:

  • Aerosmith and NSYNC in 2001
  • U2 in 2002
  • Jessica Simpson, Janet Jackson, Justin Timberlake, P. Diddy, Nelly, and Kid Rock in 2004 (though this performance may be memorable for other reasons)
  • Prince in 2007
  • The Black Eyed Peas in 2011
  • Beyonce in 2013
  • Katy Perry in 2015
  • Shakira, Jennifer Lopez, Bad Bunny, J Balvin in 2020
  • Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Eminem, Mary J. Blige, Kendrick Lamar, 50 Cent in 2022

Next up? I’m sure you all know by now, but Rihanna will be performing this year’s Super Bowl Halftime Show! We won’t know which surprise guests are making an appearance, but we can’t wait to find out.

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