The Weeknd brings Las Vegas to Tampa during EPIC Super Bowl LV halftime show

The Weeknd took Tampa, Florida to the darkest depths of the Las Vegas party scene during his haunting Super Bowl LV halftime show on Sunday night.

Set at the Raymond James Stadium, the 30-year-old hitmaker appeared on stage in a floating black convertible surrounded by flashing neon signs reminiscent of Sin City.

Emerging from the vehicle, The Weeknd belted out the lyrics to his most infectious hits in front of a sequin-clad robo-choir and an ultra moody cityscape – located high up in the stadium bleachers.

Dark depths: The Weeknd took Tampam Florida to the darkest depth of the Las Vegas party scene during his haunting Super Bowl LV half time show on Sunday night

Sin City: Set at the Raymond James Stadium, the 30-year-old hitmaker appeared on stage in a floating black convertible surrounded by flashing neon signs reminiscent of Sin City

Sin City: Set at the Raymond James Stadium, the 30-year-old hitmaker appeared on stage in a floating black convertible surrounded by flashing neon signs reminiscent of Sin City

Before diving into the songs off his latest record After Hours, the Grammy Award-winner treated fans to renditions of his earlier hits, such as Starboy and The Hills.

The Weeknd, known for staying in character, sported the sparkly red blazer and black shirt and trousers that his After Hours alter ego has donned in every music video since the album’s March 2020 release.

After uttering the final string of lyrics from The Hills, the large cityscape behind The Weeknd opened up and formed a highly illuminated entry way for the star.

Recreating the imagery from his hypnotic Blinding Lights music video, The Weeknd grabbed ahold of a handheld camera and taped himself singing amidst a bright, mirrored room located within the depths of the faux cityscape.

Minion madness: At the midpoint of his performance, The Weeknd was joined by a slew of bandaged lookalikes, who performed curated dance moves alongside the megastar on the Raymond James Stadium field

 Minion madness: At the midpoint of his performance, The Weeknd was joined by a slew of bandaged lookalikes, who performed curated dance moves alongside the megastar on the Raymond James Stadium field

Moody: Emerging from the vehicle, The Weeknd belted out the lyrics to his most infectious hits in front of a sequin-clad robo-choir and an ultra moody cityscape

Moody: Emerging from the vehicle, The Weeknd belted out the lyrics to his most infectious hits in front of a sequin-clad robo-choir and an ultra moody cityscape

The purposely jarring – and sometimes nauseating – handheld coverage captured the chaotic nature of the tight knit quarters that The Weeknd was navigating through.

Aside from bulbs, there were also lit up arrows and various cursive words, like ‘Gone,’ ‘Nothing,’ and Feel,’ that illuminated the narrow path of funhouse mirrors.

The Weeknd then began to sing his 2018 smash hit Can’t Feel My Face as he moved the camera in and out from his wide-eyed face.

As he reached the chorus, The Weeknd was suddenly joined by a band of bandaged dancers, rocking his same exact ensemble, that began bumping into mirrors and one another as they followed the singer-songwriter blindly.

Kind of a big deal: The Weeknd released his fourth studio album in March, titled After Hours, and reportedly broke the record for the most global pre-adds in Apple Music history with more than one million users

Kind of a big deal: The Weeknd released his fourth studio album in March, titled After Hours, and reportedly broke the record for the most global pre-adds in Apple Music history with more than one million users

Throwback: Before diving into the songs off his latest record After Hours, the Grammy Award-winner treated fans to renditions of his earlier hits, such as Starboy and The Hills

Throwback: Before diving into the songs off his latest record After Hours, the Grammy Award-winner treated fans to renditions of his earlier hits, such as Starboy and The Hills

 Throwback: Before diving into the songs off his latest record After Hours, the Grammy Award-winner treated fans to renditions of his earlier hits, such as Starboy and The Hills

In character: The Weeknd, known for staying in character, sported the sparkly red blazer and black shirt and trousers that his After Hours alter ego has donned in every music video since the album's March 2020 release

In character: The Weeknd, known for staying in character, sported the sparkly red blazer and black shirt and trousers that his After Hours alter ego has donned in every music video since the album’s March 2020 release

Their heads were completely concealed with white gauze, which was an homage to The Weeknd’s After Hours transformation, something he has displayed at socially-distanced award shows throughout 2020.

The masked bandits pushed The Weeknd around as he continued to effortlessly sing the well known lyrics to Can’t Feel My Face, while starring directly into a steadicam.

With the chaos coming to a halt for a brief moment, the Starboy hitmaker and his bandaged crew posed stoically with their hands at their sides, before resuming their vertigo-inspired routine.

The camera, purposely losing track of the star of the show, zoomed past the crowd of The Weeknd doppelgängers, before the entire performance returned to the main stage.

Spotlight: Separating him from the crowd, The Weeknd performed beneath a dramatic spotlight during one portion of the show

Spotlight: Separating him from the crowd, The Weeknd performed beneath a dramatic spotlight during one portion of the show

Blinding lights: An elaborate, neon cityscape acted as the backdrop for many of his performances

Blinding lights: An elaborate, neon cityscape acted as the backdrop for many of his performances 

Transition: After uttering the final string of lyrics from The Hills, the large cityscape behind The Weeknd opened up and formed a highly illuminated entry way for the star

Transition: After uttering the final string of lyrics from The Hills, the large cityscape behind The Weeknd opened up and formed a highly illuminated entry way for the star

The Weeknd, breathing heavily from adrenaline, reemerged and gazed out into the crowd in awe as the opening tune of I Feel It Coming played softly over the sound system.

Clearly caught up in the moment, the Canadian-born singer looked directly into the camera and let out a light chuckle before bringing the microphone to his mouth.

Fireworks blasted off from behind a megaboard at the stadium as The Weeknd continued to break the fourth wall and address viewers at home with his gaze.

Hypnotic: Recreating the imagery from his hypnotic Blinding Lights music video, The Weeknd grabbed ahold of a handheld camera and taped himself singing amidst a bright, mirrored room located within the depths of the faux cityscape

Hypnotic: Recreating the imagery from his hypnotic Blinding Lights music video, The Weeknd grabbed ahold of a handheld camera and taped himself singing amidst a bright, mirrored room located within the depths of the faux cityscape

Curated chaos: The purposely jarring - and sometimes nauseating - handheld coverage captured the chaotic nature of the tight knit quarters that The Weeknd was navigating through

Curated chaos: The purposely jarring – and sometimes nauseating – handheld coverage captured the chaotic nature of the tight knit quarters that The Weeknd was navigating through 

Captivating: The Weeknd then began to sing his 2018 smash hit Can't Feel My Face as he moved the camera in and out from his wide-eyed face

Captivating: The Weeknd then began to sing his 2018 smash hit Can’t Feel My Face as he moved the camera in and out from his wide-eyed face

Entering in his Save Your Tears portion of the performance, The Weeknd’s neon-lit cityscape began to flicker as a stormy evening sky appeared on a large screen behind it.

As the tension began to build, an entire orchestra emerged, with violins dominating. They played the notes to The Weeknd’s sensual Fifty Shades Of Grey track Earned It.

With his bandmates mixed among the two-dimensional skyscrapers, the former boyfriend fo Bella Hadid swayed back and forth, his hands rocking leather gloves, as he uttered the track’s brutally honest lyrics. 

Let 'em loose! As he reached the chorus, The Weeknd was suddenly joined by a band of bandaged dancers, rocking his same exact ensemble, that began bumping into mirrors and one another as they followed the singer-songwriter blindly

Let ’em loose! As he reached the chorus, The Weeknd was suddenly joined by a band of bandaged dancers, rocking his same exact ensemble, that began bumping into mirrors and one another as they followed the singer-songwriter blindly

Homage: Their heads were completely concealed with white gauze, which was an homage to The Weeknd's After Hours transformation, something he has displayed at socially-distanced award shows throughout 2020

Homage: Their heads were completely concealed with white gauze, which was an homage to The Weeknd’s After Hours transformation, something he has displayed at socially-distanced award shows throughout 2020

Taking his performance to the field, The Weeknd’s bandaged bandits delivered an eerily robotic dance routine, consisting of coordinated stomping and hand motions – complete with bright handheld lights.

Storming out from under one of the goals, The Weeknd reemerged and imitated his lookalikes’ dance moves for the cameras, while hyping up the audience in the stands.

Taking his lead single global, the multi-talented musician enthusiastically performed Blinding Lights as fireworks blasted off and his dancers gyrated. 

In the moment: The Weeknd, breathing heavily from adrenaline, reemerged and gazed out into the crowd in awe as the opening tune of I Feel It Coming played softly over the sound system

In the moment: The Weeknd, breathing heavily from adrenaline, reemerged and gazed out into the crowd in awe as the opening tune of I Feel It Coming played softly over the sound system

Protocols in place: As for protecting players, performers, attendees, and staff, from contracting the coronavirus, a source stressed to Page Six that 'the amount of COVID-19 policy and safety protocols that have been set up [at the stadium] is unbelievable'

Protocols in place: As for protecting players, performers, attendees, and staff, from contracting the coronavirus, a source stressed to Page Six that ‘the amount of COVID-19 policy and safety protocols that have been set up [at the stadium] is unbelievable’

On the move: Taking his performance to the field, The Weeknd's bandaged bandits delivered an eerily robotic dance routine, consisting of coordinated stomping and hand motions - complete with bright handheld lights

On the move: Taking his performance to the field, The Weeknd’s bandaged bandits delivered an eerily robotic dance routine, consisting of coordinated stomping and hand motions – complete with bright handheld lights

Blinding Lights: Taking his lead single global, the multi-talented musician enthusiastically performed Blinding Lights as fireworks blasted off and his dancers gyrated

Blinding Lights: Taking his lead single global, the multi-talented musician enthusiastically performed Blinding Lights as fireworks blasted off and his dancers gyrated

Storming out from under one of the goals, The Weeknd reemerged and imitated his lookalikes' dance moves for the cameras, while hyping up the audience in the stands

Storming out from under one of the goals, The Weeknd reemerged and imitated his lookalikes’ dance moves for the cameras, while hyping up the audience in the stands

Reminiscent of past Super Bowl halftime shows, The Weeknd’s dance troupe performed a synchronized routine – best scene from afar – as they quickstepped across the spacious football field.

They then began to circle the Save Your Tears hitmaker with their arms in the air and lights in their hands creating a hypnotic moment for viewers in the stadium and at home.

For the final moments of Blinding Lights, The Weeknd peered into the camera at a high angle and gestured with his leather-clad hand.

Storming out from under one of the goals, The Weeknd reemerged and imitated his lookalikes' dance moves for the cameras, while hyping up the audience in the stands

Storming out from under one of the goals, The Weeknd reemerged and imitated his lookalikes’ dance moves for the cameras, while hyping up the audience in the stands

Circle jerk: Reminiscent of past Super Bowl halftime shows, The Weeknd's dance troupe performed a synchronized routine - best scene from afar - as they quickstepped across the spacious football field

Circle jerk: Reminiscent of past Super Bowl halftime shows, The Weeknd’s dance troupe performed a synchronized routine – best scene from afar – as they quickstepped across the spacious football field

All eyes on him: For the final moments of Blinding Lights, The Weeknd peered into the camera at a high angle and gestured with his leather-clad hand

All eyes on him: For the final moments of Blinding Lights, The Weeknd peered into the camera at a high angle and gestured with his leather-clad hand

His dancers kneeled on the turf, while the recent Billboard coverboy relished in his moment of victory with his arms held out in the air. 

The crowd cheered passionately as more fireworks burst from the megaboards on each side of the vast stadium field, before the entire scene went black.

The Weeknd’s entire Super Bowl halftime show ran a little under thirteen minutes, with the singer performing zero costume changes, unlike his female counter parts in years past. 

In the weeks leading up to his epic halftime show, The Weeknd several dropped hints about his performance, including that he shelled out $7million of his own cash for the ambitious endeavor.

This past Thursday, The Weeknd revealed he would be taking the stage solo, meaning there would be ‘no special guests’ during his ‘phenomenal and historic’ halftime show.

Relishing: His dancers kneeled on the turf, while the recent Billboard coverboy relished in his moment of victory with his arms in the air

Relishing: His dancers kneeled on the turf, while the recent Billboard coverboy relished in his moment of victory with his arms in the air

Grand finale: The crowd cheered passionately as more fireworks bursted from the megaboards on each side of the vast stadium field

Grand finale: The crowd cheered passionately as more fireworks bursted from the megaboards on each side of the vast stadium field

He explained that there just ‘wasn’t any room to fit [guests] in the narrative of the story [he] was telling in the performance.’

‘So yeah, there’s no special guests, no,’ concluded the Grammy-winner, who spoke during the Pepsi Super Bowl LV Halftime Show Press Conference.

In another interview with Entertainment Tonight, The Weekend explained that his show would not take place on a stage in the middle of the field, but rather in the stands.

‘Due to the COVID and the safety of the players and the workers, we kind of built the stage within the stadium,’ the singer said.

He added that his halftime show performance would also make use of the field, adding that he and his team ‘wanted to kind of do something that hasn’t been done before.’ 

‘We’re incorporating a little bit, but again you’ll have to watch on Sunday … the crowd here is insane — they don’t sing the lyrics back, they scream them back at you. It’s such an experience, I love Tampa. I feel at home,’ concluded the star.

While most halftime shows require 5,000 staffers for setup and breakdown alone, the coronavirus has changed production efforts, forcing designs to be scaled back.

‘It’s a total of 1,000 people, and they can’t touch the field,’ an insider revealed to Page Six last week. 

‘How do you pull off a show that’s not on the field and is as impactful as it’s ever been with same level of entertainment?’

The source added: ‘Wait till you see it, it’s beautifully done. It’s different and it’s historic.’

Jay-Z, who began working with the NFL in 2019, and Roc Nation are executive producing The Weeknd’s awe-inspiring halftime show, which took place LIVE at the Raymond James Stadium in Tampa Bay, Florida.

The Weeknd released his fourth studio album in March, titled After Hours, and reportedly broke the record for the most global pre-adds in Apple Music history with more than one million users.

His massively popular song, Blinding Lights, was also named the most streamed song of 2020 by Spotify despite the artist being controversially snubbed with zero nominations from the Grammy Awards.  

As for protecting players, performers, attendees, and staff, from contracting the coronavirus, a source stressed to Page Six that ‘the amount of COVID-19 policy and safety protocols that have been set up [at the stadium] is unbelievable.’ 

‘They really have an incredible system in place. Roger Goodell and the league have done an amazing job.’ 

The Kansas City Chiefs, who took home the Lombardi Trophy last year, face off against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who now boast Tom Brady as their team’s quarterback, during Super Bowl LV on Sunday night.

Prior to the start of the big game, Grammy-nominated artists Eric Church and Jazmine Sullivan delivered a first of its kind rendition of the National Anthem.

Singing America The Beautiful was none other than singer-songwriter H.E.R.

Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Pin It on Pinterest

Secured By miniOrange