This Sunday, Lady Gaga will take the stage at the NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas, for the Super Bowl Halftime Show—but in the meantime let’s countdown the five most spectacular halftime shows from this decade. We’re not gonna lie—the stakes are very high for Mother Monster if she wants to compete with these stellar performances.
5. Coldplay with Bruno Mars and Beyoncé, 2016
With a stage full of flowers, Coldplay sang their biggest hits. The show was going well, and Bruno Mars doing “Uptown Funk” kept the show rolling … but then Beyoncé arrived with her army of women to debut “Formation.” The festivities continued with a dance-off between Bruno and Bey, and the show was capped with a video compilation of the best halftime show moments from the last 50 years.
4. Katy Perry with Missy Elliott and Lenny Kravitz, 2015
This was an unforgettable performance—a powerful opening, Katy Perry flying across the field on a shooting star … oh, and weird dancing sharks. (Remember that #LeftShark craze?) Perry had Lenny Kravitz and Missy Elliott in tow, and they rocked the place down. While not our favorite all-time performance, Katy Perry’s buoyancy made the Super Bowl fun again.
3. Bruno Mars, 2014
Energetic, bright and incredibly passionate—that’s Bruno Mars. His uplifting halftime show took us back to an older era of music, when the funk and feeling were so important it made you feel brand-new and full of life.
2. Madonna with LMFAO, Nicki Minaj, M.I.A. and Cee Lo Green, 2012
When it comes to putting on a show, few do it better than the recently-banned-from-Texas-radio Madonna. She’s done it all, perfected herself and still manages to surprise us every time. In 2012 she went from a gladiator to a cheerleader to a preacher with a full church choir, performing alongside LMFAO, Nicki Minaj, M.I.A. and Cee Lo Green. The stage show was colorful, the stakes were huge and the whole thing ended with a call for world peace.
1. Beyoncé with Kelly and Michelle, 2013
This halftime show had it all. Starting out with a flaming silhouette, Beyoncé walked to a stage featuring her own face—something that made us gag and gave us the first OMG! moment of the night. We then got to see over 50 women dancing, before a confident Kelly Rowland was propelled onto the stage, hitting the landing perfectly. (Michelle Williams’ landing wasn’t quite so poised.) We watched, mouths agape, as Queen Bey performed nine of her biggest hits, all with her signature style, and that’s why she’ll go down in history as one of the best Super Bowl halftime shows of all time.
We can’t wait to see what you have for us Lady Gaga!