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Rihanna Rocks Dreads, Sounds Winded Performing ‘Where Have You Been’ on ‘American Idol’

Frazer Harrison, Getty Images

Before the ‘American Idol‘ winner of Season 11 was crowned on tonight’s (May 23) big finale, Rihanna hit the stage with a troupe of tribal dancers to perform her latest hit, ‘Where Have You Been.’ Earlier today, RiRi tweeted a picture of herself with some serious dreadlocks, and now we know why! She was rocking a massive ponytail of dreads and straight bangs during her performance, which was impressive visually, but lacked sonically.

Rihanna’s entrance to the stage was something out of a sci-fi movie meeting ancient Egypt, as buff, half naked men wheeled a giant box to the stage with lit up, colorful cutouts. The stage was smokey, and as the sides of the box dropped down to reveal a pyramid, Rihanna’s silhouette came into sight. Wearing a black bra top and hot pants with massively long fringe, Rihanna emerged from her pyramid as the beat picked up in ‘Where Have You Been,’ her most current single off of ‘Talk That Talk.’

As the first breakdown came after the chorus, Rihanna busted out the choreography from her video, winding and grinding and stomping with her dancers. While it was fun to watch RiRi really dance for a change, her vocal performance took a toll as a result of the rigorous routine. Her voice sounded good at the beginning, but she was clearly winded as the song went on. When the final big notes came (where Rihanna sings, “You can have me all you want / Any way, any day / To show me where you are tonight“), she faded out early, and she could barely finish the final line of the song.

We love Rihanna, but if dancing makes her vocal performance suffer so much, we could do without it.

Watch Rihanna Perform ‘Where Have You Been’ On ‘American Idol’

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