JLo & Shakira Super Bowl Halftime Show: The influence of Latina performers
During the Super Bowl Halftime Show, Shakira and Jennifer Lopez were examples of the significance of performers can have in displaying a message for others.
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During Sunday night’s Super Bowl Halftime Show, Shakira and Jennifer Lopez made history as the first Latinas to perform during the annual spectacle that attracts tens of thousands of fans in person, and hundreds of millions watching on television nationwide.
With a platform as big as the Super Bowl Halftime stage, it’s a prime opportunity to not only perform, but make a grand statement when the moment arises.
During each of their performances, Shakira and Jennifer Lopez did just that. The gestures throughout their performances brought attention to and called into question current mainstream narratives surrounding Latinos. It’s an example of how entertainers can shed light on this issue in a way that is unique in relation to their profession.
This reality is shown through one organization, L'ATTITUDE.
L’ATTITUDE congratulates L’ATTITUDE alum Jennifer Lopez and Shakira on the BEST HALFTIME SHOW EVER! We are blown away by this iconic performance filled with #TheLatinoFactor!! Way to represent the Latinx community! pic.twitter.com/xzGwCN1317— L'ATTITUDE (@LATTITUDEevent) February 3, 2020
As an initiative, L’ATTITUDE is focused on changing the narrative of who Latinos are. A business-based national initiative, L’ATTITUDE has gone beyond the traditional pull of business and industry leaders, and politicians as the main drivers of its mission. Notable entertainers have also played a big role in driving the mission since it was founded in 2018.
Shakira and Lopez fall under the category of entertainers with the global popularity and recognition to help push forward a more genuine narrative of Latinos in the United States.
During her performances, Shakira paid homage to both her Latina and Middle Eastern roots with her dance and performance routines. Lopez, with her performances, brought light to the current situation facing many Latinos at the border due to the Trump administration’s policies. In one segment, a group of children are seen underneath lights in the shape of a cage, which many interpreted as a reference to the detention of thousands of children and separation of asylum-seeking families at the U.S.-Mexico border. In addition, Lopez also donned a coat with colors that resembled the Puerto Rican flag, a nod to her roots, and likely a statement to draw attention to the aftermath of several high magnitude earthquakes that have hit the island over the past few weeks.
These conscious decisions express the creative manner in which performers and entertainers can send a message, while also staying true to the core of their profession. Beyond the song lyrics, performers are afforded a chance to visually express a message to the listener. It’s why entertainers have a place at the table with high-profile executives or politicians that often are at the forefront of initiatives, such as L’ATTITUDE.
In the build-up to the Super Bowl, a lot was said about what having two Latina performers could do to potentially influence the Latino community.
After the fact, it’s safe to say that it was a performance that will continue to be talked about for years to come, for more than just the quality of the entertainment itself.
It’s another example of just how big of an influence performers and entertainers can have as leaders in changing or rectifying the narrative of the true reality of being part of the Latino community.