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10 Star Performances from the Super Bowl Half-time Shows

The 10 best ever shows in the 55 years of Super Bowl history

The Super Bowl has been in our lives for the last 55 years. That means that we have had 55 half-time shows. Over the last 20 years, the half-time shows have become bigger than the sporting event itself. 

The next day, you will see as much talk about the headlining artist as you will the winners of the Super Bowl. Think you know who’s going to win the Super Bowl next year – click here to place a bet on it. 

Here are the 10-star performances from the Super Bowl’s half-time shows:  

#10 – Aerosmith (2001)

This performance has made it onto this list for one song and one song only. The performance of Walk This Way featuring Aerosmith, NSYNC, Brittney, and Mary J Blige. Iconic.

#9 – Katy Perry (2015)

There are so many parts of this performance that are unforgettable. Perry arriving on a giant robot lion. Left shark. Perry performing hit after hit in some of the funnest outfits the Superbowl has ever seen. Did we mention Left Shark?!  

#8 – Madonna (2012)

Madonna was the first solo woman to headline the Super Bowl half-time show in over 15 years and this performance paved the way for most of this top ten list. Sadly she wasn’t paid for this performance. 

The show required over 500 costumes and featured appearances from a wide range of arts including M.I.A, CeeLo Green, LMFAO, and Nikki Manaj.  

#7 – Bruce Springsteen (2009)

Springsteen performed with the E Street Band at the 2009 Super Bowl. At the time he was the 5th veteran artist in a row to headline the event. 

The group didn’t miss a beat and treated the audience to some of Springsteen’s cult hits. 

#6 – Lady Gaga (2017)

Gaga has always delighted and surprised her audiences. Whether it be with her sensational voice, her ability to play over 10 instruments, or her outrageous costumes. Her Super Bowl performance was no different. 

Gaga began her performance on the roof of the stadium before diving onto the stage using a wire – one of the most unforgettable opening moments of all time. 

#5 – Prince (2007)

There were rumors that the NFL was planning to cancel their half-time shows before Prince came along and saved the day. 

This performance was 12 minutes of pure perfection and is one of the best live performances caught on tape. Thank you, Prince, for keeping the half-time show alive. 

#4 – Michael Jackson (1993)

We have MJ to thank for the current format of our half-time shows. He was the man that changed the game. His performance had such an impact that many Super Bowl performers have played tribute to him during their shows since his death. 

It is still one of the most-watched TV events of all time. 

Many will remember Jackson standing perfectly still in the middle of the stage for nearly two minutes before beginning his performance. Jackson opened with a Billie Jean and Black or White Medley. Eventually, he closed with ‘We are the World’ with the help of a 3,500 strong children’s choir. 

#3 – Shikara and J-Lo (2020)

Shikara and J-Lo’s 2020 performance was the most-watched Super Bowl half-time show of all time. With audiences peaking at 110+ million. 

Viewers were shocked (and sometimes a little scandalized) by the high energy, athletic, and sensual performances the two ladies put on. This performance was a celebration of both women’s Latin heritage. 

#2 – U2’s 9/11 Tribute (2002)

This was one of the most emotional Super Bowl performances of all time. 

U2 had experienced violence and terrorism tearing apart their own country and could wholeheartedly sympathize with the trauma that 9/11 caused the American people.

They dedicated their 2002 performance to the victims of the 9/11 attacks and performed in front of the victims’ names. They ended their performance with a note of hope. While singing ‘Where the Streets Have No Name’ Bono opened his trademark leather jacket to reveal the American flag lining inside. 

#1 – Beyonce (2016 + 2013)

We’re including both of Beyonce’s Super Bowl appearances on this list – she headlined in 2013 and supported Coldplay in 2016. 

Firstly, Beyonce’s performance in 2013 opened with a powerful performance of ‘Who Run the World (Girl)’, halfway through the show she was joined by the other Destiny’s Child members for an unforgettable reunion. Then she ended the show with a breathtaking performance of Halo. 

Her second show, during which she totally showed up the headliners Coldplay, was in 2016. She performed her song Formation with a set of backing dancers dressed like Black Panthers. Which upset a lot of viewers. Later she joined Bruno Mars in a performance of Uptown Funk. We’ll be honest, listening to a version of that song that doesn’t include Beyonce is a little disappointing now.