One of her dancers added that the cold weather meant Rihanna wore oversized sweatshirts without causing any pregnancy suspicion.
Rihanna's Super Bowl backup dancers didn't know she was pregnant, dancers Laila Hayes and Luhnyae Campbell told ET on Wednesday. Hayes and Campbell were two of the 280 dancers who surrounded RiRi onstage and on the field at the halftime show last weekend.
"I don't think anybody really knew she was pregnant," Hayes said. "She hid it very well."
Hayes and Campbell were selected as backup dancers in late January, and rehearsed the show for two weeks, sometimes dancing for up to nine hours a day.
The group didn't join Rihanna until the week of the show, when she rehearsed with them on the field, but still stayed separate from the larger group.
"She was rehearsing onstage, they made sure that they had her safe in the middle of the stage and then the group that I was in would stay on the sidelines," Hayes said.
"Let a boss woman do what a boss woman needs to do, I won't get in the way with that," Campbell quipped.
Neither of the dancers noticed her pregnancy, nor did any of their colleagues. Hayes added that the cold weather meant Rihanna wore oversized Fenty sweatsuits without causing any suspicion, even at one point wearing the jumpsuit she performed in, zipped over her baby bump.
"We were all confused watching it during the real thing when she went up there and was showing her stomach," Hayes said. "She wore the same outfit for one of the dress rehearsals but it was zippered up."
"I never saw a bump," Campbell said. "Not even the day of. I had to rewatch the performance on YouTube to realize."
Though she kept her distance, Hayes and Campbell said Rihanna was amazing to work with.
"A little bit before [the performance], she had just thanked all the dancers, the production company, the directors," Hayes shared.
"I loved watching her during rehearsals," Campbell said. "She was such a light. You could see it in her face, how much she was genuinely enjoying the production and the performance of all the dancers."
"She's just so talented," Campbell continued. "I think she killed it, and she's such a marketing genius as well, because as a marketing student here at Arizona State University, I was so in awe of how she also added the elements of what she does outside of music."
Rihanna made headlines for her Fenty product placement throughout the show.
Both dancers also took time to point out the singer's natural beauty. "She's so beautiful, we're all just starstruck," Campbell said. "Even when she came to rehearsals with no makeup, she was glowing."
"She's super gorgeous, she was super nice to all of us," Hayes added.
When Rihanna wasn't there, or was practicing separately, choreographer Parris Goebel filled in for her.
"She would stand in for her, sing all the songs, lip sync all the songs, do all her choreography because she knows everything," Hayes said of Goebel. "She's amazing."
After Sunday's performance, Goebel shared several rehearsal videos of herself standing in for RiRi among the dancers. The clips quickly went viral, and are still racking up millions of views.
In January, Goebel spoke with ET about her choreography process, saying her inspiration always begins with good music.
"I always start with the music and I go from there," she said. "It's really just life, things that I experience as a woman, things that I feel, emotions, all of that. I just pull from it and create."
Goebel also choreographed Jennifer Lopez's Super Bowl halftime show in 2020, but she said the prior experience didn't make this time around feel any less challenging.
"It feels like it's my first time doing this, it's different," she said, adding that Rihanna "just kind of breaks all the rules so every time I work with her, you don't know what to expect."
But wouldn't have it any other way, saying, "It's so fun and so exciting."