As had been long rumored, Madonna is indeed performing at Super Bowl XLVI's half-time show Feb. 5 in Indianapolis. Both the NFL and superstar confirmed the Material Girl’s appearance Sunday night.
What do we know? We know that she is collaborating with a team from Cirque du Soleil, so we can expect some wildly inventive and weird acrobatics to keep everyone entertained. She’s also partnering with Moment Factory, a company that produces multimedia events in strange spaces, whether it be outdoors or between buildings.
A number of folks have commented that Madonna’s audience hardly matches up with the typical football fan, but that’s the point. Look at past performers like Black Eyed Peas. This is the most watched event in the world. The producers know they have the football fans locked up; they need someone who brings in the rest of the globe. While the halftime show needs to look good for the 80,000 fans in the stadium, it is really meant for those of us sitting on our couches on our 12th beer and third plate of nachos.
The actual performance time for the artist is 12 minutes. Yep, that’s it. Here’s how we’d like to see Madonna spend her dozen minutes in front of billions of people. Assume these songs are trimmed so she can get them all in.
1) Open with “Give Me All Your Love,” the peppy, '80s-ish track that leaked a few weeks ago. The song starts with the sound of cheerleaders spelling out “L-U-V, Madonna, Y-O-U,” so it's perfect for a sporting event. Now there are rumors that Nicki Minaj and M.I.A. could be on the final version of the song, so they could join to get things started with some high voltage.
2) With the new song out of the way, Madonna should go straight for the highest-energy hits to keep the crowd going and to prove that this 53-year old can still kick any 22-year old’s ass to the curb when it comes to dominating a stage. Remind everyone how it’s done. Segue into “Express Yourself.” Sure it’s old, but it’s still a goody and it can keep the crowd on its feet. Man, you don’t realize how many ballads Madge has had until you go through her greatest hits and try to pick the uptempo ones. (Speaking of ballads, a new Madonna track, "Masterpiece," leaked out today. The swaying, gentle ballad is reported to be on both the "W.E." soundtrack and on the new album. Hear it here.
3) Go into “Vogue” and bring back Minaj. It’s mid-point and the idea is to build and crest, build and crest. This is the first point to catch her breath, but show off the dance that everyone knows. Have a flash mob in the field who can do the “Vogue” arm movements. It's cheesy, but it will look good.
4) Move into “Ray of Light.” It’s frenetic so it will start another build, and it also lends itself to all kinds of bells and whistles and special lighting effects.
5) Close with “Like a Prayer,” Bring the ravers down a little bit, and close with something that eventhe football fans know. It’s very dramatic and it also can get the whole stadium clapping as she takes us there. Bring in the requisite choir and turn Lucas Oil Stadium into the world's biggest church.
What do you think? What are your suggestions for Madonna's Superbowl show?