Rihanna blew the world away with her iconic Super Bowl halftime show, and no, she didn’t take home a hefty pay cheque afterwards.
Despite the singer putting in the #work for her performance, which was her first in seven years, it is actually customary for performers not to be paid for the event.
Not one of the previous Super Bowl performers, which include Beyoncé, Maroon 5, Prince, Bruce Springsteen and Paul McCartney, have been paid for their work in the past. Below we explain why.
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The number one reason why stars aren’t paid to perform at the Super Bowl is that the promotional opportunity for them is so great.
The Super Bowl traditionally brings nearly 100 million worldwide viewers each year, with this year seeing a record-breaking 110 million viewers tuning in to the major game between the Kansas City Chiefs and the Philadelphia Eagles.
With that many eyes on the game, the halftime show is considered a golden gig, with artists often seeing major boosts in their music sales and social media following afterwards.
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It also explains why Rihanna’s chosen moment to powder her nose with a Fenty Beauty compact wasn’t just a cute shoutout, but a genius one.
The average price for a Super Bowl advertisement is US$6 million, or approximately $8.6 million.
For that reason, most artists try to nab a place at the Super Bowl if they have a new album or product to sell. But in this case, Rihanna, who doesn’t appear to have any new music on the horizon, appears to have simply taken the job to spruik Fenty Beauty and satisfy her fans who have been nagging her for years to bring them a performance.
An NFL spokesperson confirmed to Forbes in 2016 that while they “do not pay the artists” they do “cover expenses and production costs.”
Rihanna’s dancers were paid for their work, with WIRED reporting that the star’s performance required 800 people’s help and 80 dancers.
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