Lady Gaga's Patriotic Super Bowl Performance Focuses On Inclusiveness - And Glitter

Amber Clark

Feb 06, 2017

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Lady Gaga's Patriotic Super Bowl Performance Focuses On Inclusiveness - And Glitter

Lady Gaga’s Super Bowl performance was hotly anticipated by quite a few publications – indeed, it’s been billed as one of the most expensive Super Bowl performances ever.

Many people were curious to see how the famously progressive singer would handle a performance on such a large stage so recently after the controversial election of Donald Trump – especially after Beyonce stirred up controversy at Super Bowl 50 in 2016, with a performance that paid homage to the Black Panthers.

However, Lady Gaga’s Super Bowl Performance stirred up no such controversy, instead focusing on inclusivity and patriotism – and glitter. Lots and lots of glitter. 

Patriotism Meets High Flying, Drone-Based Stunts 

Lady Gaga’s set started with the singer suspended from the roof of the NRG Stadium, with a constellation of drones illuminating the sky behind her in the shape of the American flag. The singer descended from her perch atop the dome while reciting an excerpt from the Pledge of Allegiance – clearly, Lady Gaga was very focused on proving her patriotism, and her pride in being an American.

The Setlist

After descending, the singer launched into a 13-minute medley that combined classic American songs and smash hits from her discography, beginning with a rendition of Woody Guthrie’s “This Land Is Your Land”. Next up was “Edge Of Glory”, one of Gaga’s most famous and anthemic ballads, certainly appropriate for the high-stakes environment of the Super Bowl.

In a relatively rare throwback, Gaga sang a version of her 2009 hit, “Poker Face” – arguably the song that truly set off her explosive celebrity rise. It was certainly appropriate for the setting – the line “I want to hold them like they do in Texas, please” was delivered with a wink and a nudge due to the location of Super Bowl LI in Houston, TX. 

Dressed in a sci-fi inspired sequined bodysuit, and wearing a silvery, cat-like eye mask, the glittering Gaga then began to sing one of her most famous self-confidence anthems, “Born This Way”, performing an impressive set of aerial stunts while not missing a note.

Descending back to the stage, Gaga continued with “Telephone” and “Just Dance”, two of her most popular hits from yesteryear. Finally, she descended from the stage and ran through the crowd to a piano, where she played “Million Reasons”, a release from her latest album, Joanne. During the performance, Gaga dedicated the song to her parents. 

After a little over ten minutes, Gaga made a quick costume change, donning a football-inspired, midriff-baring outfit that paid homage to the sport of the NFL. She began her final song of the night – Bad Romance, and the crowd went wild for this finale performance.

All throughout her entire performance, Gaga was accented by the Super Bowl halftime performance excess we’ve come to expect – giant troupes of synchronized dancers and musicians performed alongside her, fire-breathing props accented her beautiful performance, and audience members waved glowing yellow lights in sync with each other, providing a truly gorgeous spectacle that viewers of the halftime performance are unlikely to forget any time soon.

The Verdict

For a pure expression of artistic strength and acrobatic mettle, it’s hard to beat Lady Gaga’s Super Bowl Li performance. This singer earns every ounce of respect she gets, managing to belt out both new and old classics flawlessly while dancing, flying through the air, and interacting with members of her dance team and the audience.

And though there was an emphasis on inclusivity and American values, her performance remained non controversial – which was unexpected, given the current American political climate. Her focus was on bringing those of every value, perspective, and point-of-view together – and we, for one, thing she succeeded with a truly spectacular show.

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