Remember When Diana Ross Left Her Super Bowl Halftime Show Via Helicopter?


Twelve minutes. Fouroutfit changes. One diva-style exit via helicopter. Who cares who won Super Bowl XXX? Diana Ross’ halftime show at the January 1996 game in Tempe, Arizona put the Cowboys and the Steelers to shame. (For the record, Dallas won 27-1.)

To celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Super Bowl, Ross started her show high and ended it even higher. She was lowered to the stage by a crane of sparklers, wearing a red sequin mini dress, beginning with a medley of Supremes 1960s hits: “Stop! In the Name of Love,” “Baby Love,” and “You Can’t Hurry Love.” Meanwhile, hundreds of dancers spelled out her name on the field, and then took to the surrounding stage and platforms, leaving barely an inch of field visible.

During “Chain Reaction,” Ross changed into a sweeping orange-and-purple number, and the entire stadium joined in on the routine, spelling out the word “Love.” She took the show to new heights during her third outfit change, when she belted out “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” while being lifted above her yellow-robed choir on a glittering pedestal.

Somehow, the icon managed to outdo even all of that. As a chopper was spotted over Sun Devil Stadium, Ross coyly looked up and proclaimed, “Oh my, here comes my ride!” The Chicago Tribune proclaimed the next day that Ross went “up, up and away.” Literally. She waltzed over to the landing pad flanked by her dancers and hopped into the lowered helicopter. With two legs kicked out the open door (she was in a purple jumpsuit at this point) and each hand holding a strap, she was whisked offstage and out of the stadium. All while singing, of course, “I Will Survive.”

Justin Timberlake performs at Super Bowl LII, which happens this Sunday, February 4, 2018, at 6:30 PM EST.


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