On Sunday, February 12, 2023, Super Bowl LVII kicked off with a bang! At the State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona, Sheryl Lee Ralph set the stage for the big game with a stunning rendition of the Black National Anthem. “It is no coincidence that I will be singing the Black National Anthem, Lift Every Voice and Sing at the Super Bowl on the same date it was first publicly performed 123 years ago (February 12, 1900),” she shared. “Happy Black History Month!”
The 66 young Abbott Elementary star amazed viewers with her vocal prowess, singing the stirring song in a striking red-and-black Harbison Studio ensemble with an attached train. Fans were in awe of Sheryl ‘s performance but wondered if she was lip-syncing. However, they quickly discovered that lip-syncing is actually a common occurrence at the Super Bowl, even with instruments. From Whitney Houston to Rihanna, numerous renowned performers have pre-recorded their songs as a safety measure against possible live mishaps. Chris Stapleton, Babyface, and Sheryl also sang live during their performances, but it’s often hard for fans in the stadium to hear the music over the roaring crowd. Regardless of whether they lip-synced or sang live, they all have incredible voices and the success of their performances is a testament to that.Read more: Sheryl Lee Ralph: ‘Lift Every Voice’ at Super Bowl 2023
Sheryl was honored to be chosen to perform, especially since the Eagles were in the Super Bowl and it was the 123rd anniversary of the Black National Anthem’s first public performance. Her Abbott co-stars Quinta Brunson and Lisa Ann Walter were in the crowd to cheer her on, proving that dreams can come true with hard work and dedication.
Though questions were raised as to whether or not she was lip-syncing, Sheryl had a perfect response when reporters asked. “Does it matter? Does it matter? No. Thank you,” she told The Hollywood Reporter. Sheryl was honored to be chosen to perform, and everything seemed to align perfectly to make her dream a reality. “It’s just so amazing that they chose me. And then the Eagles are in the Super Bowl. I mean, come on. You know God must be a woman because all of this is just too perfect,” Sheryl said.
Thanks to the incredible performances of Sheryl, Stapleton, Babyface, and Rihanna, the thrilling athleticism of the athletes, and the fun-filled ads, Super Bowl LVII was an unforgettable experience!
Sheryl’s daughter, Ivy-Victoria Maurice, acted as her fashion advisor for the important occasion and noted that having mom in red with a choir in white behind her, just like Rihanna’s halftime show, was purely coincidental. “We had no clue that Rihanna would be wearing red and her background singers donning white. It was an unplanned, yet intentional move,” Ivy-Victoria shared with ET. Ahead of the Super Bowl, Sheryl was ecstatic to have been asked to perform. She told ET, “I was in awe when they asked me to be part of the opening ceremonies, singing a song that has never been featured before. Of course I said yes!” Sheryl’s performance of the Black National Anthem was nothing short of incredible and her daughter’s styling was spot on! Super Bowl LVII was a night to remember, and Sheryl’s performance was just the cherry on top.