Amanda Gorman captured the hearts of people throughout the United States with her passionate performance at President Joe Biden’s inauguration last week. Now, the rising star is taking that explosive success all the way to the Super Bowl.
The NFL announced on Wednesday (January 27) that Gorman is scheduled to recite an original poem ahead of Super Bowl LV during the pregame ceremony. Her piece will recognize three honorary game captains who were each selected by the League for their commitment to supporting their communities throughout the coronavirus pandemic. They include the Los Angeles educator Trimaine Davis, Tampa nurse Suzie Dorner, and Marine veteran James Martin.
At 22, Gorman is the first person to be named National Youth Poet Laureate. Her Inauguration Day reading of “The Hill We Climb” received widespread acclaim for its message of hope and reconciliation while addressing the fragile state of the country, particularly in the wake of the attack on the Capitol on January 6. Among the thousands of people who shared their praise on social media was former President Barack Obama, who tweeted that her piece “more than met the moment.” Oprah Winfrey added that she has “never been prouder to see another young woman rise!”
“We have to confront these realities if we’re going to move forward, so that’s also an important touchstone of the poem,” Gorman told The New York Times of the meaning behind her verse. “There is space for grief and horror and hope and unity, and I also hope that there is a breath for joy in the poem, because I do think we have a lot to celebrate at this inauguration.”
Due to the ongoing pandemic, the Super Bowl will look a little different this year, with a smaller audience than in previous years. Slated for February 7, The Weeknd will light up the stage for the halftime show, while Miley Cyrus will headline a tailgate concert sponsored by TikTok. Jazmine Sullivan, Eric Church, and H.E.R. are also scheduled to perform.