While half of America tunes in to watch the Superbowl proper, the other half certainly tunes in to catch the half-time show. This has become a HUGE deal and being invited to fill this halftime slot is one of the signs one has truly made it, that an artist is really up there amongst the Greats – not just in singing but in performing. Because playing to a crowd that huge with millions more watching on TV requires not just playing a set list of hits, but reinventing the list and delivering a performance worthy of the biggest sporting event of the year.
Year after year, each star tries to outdo the one that came before, or at least offer up something sufficiently different. This year Lady Gaga certainly did that. And the ratings showed. According to Fox, she was the second most-watched act in the history of the Superbowl, with 117.5 million viewers. Her 13-minutes began with an incredibly moving rendition of God Bless America and This Land is Your Land, singing with a backdrop of the night sky lit up with incredible drone technology, which peppered the skies with a thousand stars that gradually reformed into the American flag. She then literally flew down from the rooftop to deliver her monster hits – Poker Face, Born This Way, Telephone, Just Dance, Bad Romance – dressed in a futuristic silver-sequined leotard.
The highlight was her hit song Million Reasons from her latest album Joanne, where she does a 180-degree turn of pace, slowing things down and belting out this inspiring tune from the keyboard, as the stadium alights with a million torches. Very magical indeed. She ends the song by hugging an ethnic looking beauty from the crowd, singing “Why don’t you stay?”, some say in response to Trump’s immigration policies that were receiving particular heat at the time. But no, her show was neither divisive nor political, but with the politics of the day, you would be hard-pressed to find a highly-televised event or award show with no reference to politics at all.
Gaga then followed up her Superbowl 13 minutes with a bang, releasing the music video to John Wayne shortly after, as well as announcing her upcoming Joanne World Tour, which kicks off in Vancouver in August. She is also all set to star in the remake of A Star is Born with Bradley Cooper, who will also direct. Judy Garland and James Mason starred in the 1954 version, while Barbra Streisand and Kris Kristofferson starred in the 1976 version.
Says Gaga on acting, “There’s nothing that I ever wanted more. I always wanted to be an actress.” And the saying is true that when there’s talent, there is no holding it down, as this Fire Tiger lady is so clearly demonstrating. This will not even be her first turn in acting; she has already won a Golden Globe for Best Actress in a miniseries for her performance in American Horror Story: Hotel, but A Star is Born will mark her move from the small screen to the big one.
This Tigress enjoys a Big Auspicious Star in 2017, which will help her maintain the momentum she has built up with the Superbowl coup. And her co-star Bradley Cooper is also a Tiger. Two Tigers are better than one, and timing-wise could not be more perfect for the pair as their movie is slated for release in 2018, the Year of the Dog, a strong ally of the Tiger.
Way out though she may be, Lady Gaga has the knack of turning whatever genre she has embraced into a popular mainstream one. From her early sugary pop hits Eh Eh (Nothing Else I Can Say) to Poker Face from The Fame, to Bad Romance and Telephone from The Fame Monster, the much edgier Marry The Night and The Edge of Glory from Born This Way, to her latest album Joanne, which features some wonderfully mellow and fabulously stripped-down numbers Million Reasons, Sinner’s Prayer and Grigio Girls, Lady Gaga is developing to be an institution all of her own, and set to conquer every crevice of the performing arts world, and we, the audience, will be all the richer for it!