My friends and I were cast in the Superbowl halftime show as palm trees, and one of us discovered an ama request for the trees. I was the downstage right palm tree. /u/asumello61 is the infamous palm tree that was grinded on by Katy Perry who will be participating in this as well.

/u/asumello61's proof is the halftime wristband we were issued upon entry, the leather converse we wore during the performance, and his Sun Devil band jacket (we were selected from Arizona State's marching band).

My proof is a picture of me in costume before we performed today, the converse we wore under our costumes, and the radio we were provided so that we could hear our cues.

Sorry this took a long time getting up, but I will be up for awhile to answer your questions.

edit:/u/jdawgg92 was also a part of the show, and is going to help me answer questions.

Edit 2:

Group photo of the Prop Crew and handlers minus the sharks.

Edit 3: I'm really trying to get to everyone's comments, there's more than I was expecting here but I will try to respond to all of them. (or at least one of us will)

Edit 4: Alright Reddit, I need to get some sleep now. Feel free to keep posting questions and I will get to them in the morning.

Edit 5: My friends woke me up saying how big this has gotten. Holy Shit! Never imagined it would have blown up like this. I'm back and answering your questions! I'd like to thank Justin for answering them during my absence.

Edit 6: Really trying to keep up with all the questions pouring in keep them coming. I don't have class today so hopefully I can get to most of them! You guys are awesome!

Edit 7: Going to finish off another round of questions but I need to take a break and go to store to get milk. Afterwards I'll be back to continue answering questions.

Edit 8: I got my coffee and french toast crunch and I'm ready to answer some more questions.

Edit 9: Looks like I'm about to be upstaged by Kristin Chenoweth and Martin Sheen. If you still have questions feel free to ask away. Just wanted to say thanks to everyone for making this a great AMA I had a lot of fun doing this!

Edit 10: This was extremely exciting at first, but it now has become completely a little stressful as the media has gotten some things lost in translation. So here I am setting the record straight.

I didn't get compensated and I don't care it was a worthwhile experience and I would do it again given the opportunity. If you are so worried about me not being paid then how about you pay me for using my words and all the effort I put into this article for these nice people. Hell I'd probably just donate it to charity anyways.

The MCC dancers were replaced by KATY PERRY'S DANCERS. Not random people that were hired on three days before the show. It was a decision that albeit disappointing for my fellow cast members was understandable and made sense.

Garret was not part of MCC nor was he a shark EVER. He assisted the palm trees.

I know this article covers a lot but these websites could contact me personally and ask questions if they're that curious.

Edit 11: I'm probably just freaking out over nothing x.x

Comments: 1752 • Responses: 53  • Date: 

somedumbscreenname2179 karma

Why didn't you audition for the part of "Left Shark"?

Prathios1913 karma

The sharks were originally supposed to be dancers from Mesa Community College but 2-3 days before the performance Katy decided she wanted her own people in costume.

Prathios2014 karma

The worst part is the MCC dancers had been practicing it for much longer and definitely knew it better at least in my opinion.

reddit858333 karma

What a time to be alive.

Prathios347 karma

Right? Still riding the hype train from earlier today.

SteveRodgers1945213 karma

Can you ask the sharks to do an ama?

Prathios422 karma

I would if I knew them.

habalushy55 karma

Supposedly one was Snoop. Can you corroborate?

Prathios315 karma

Sorry but it was not Snoop

And_You_Like_It_Too1597 karma

When you guys were little trees, did you ever think you'd make it this far in showbiz?

Prathios1459 karma

I always had dreams...aspirations and I finally made it. I'm a rockstar!

ffrook1323 karma

Were you compensated?

Prathios2451 karma

We were not compensated. It was a volunteer position.

Newkd507 karma

Katy Perry didn't even get compensated. Usually the artists have to pay the NFL to perform. Katy, however, said she wasn't gonna do that. Source

EDIT: As others have pointed out, the NFL has never made an artist pay before this was just the first year they were considering it. Katy still didn't get paid though.

IBiteYou275 karma

It seems to be a trend in recent years that the artists don't pay. The NFL covers the production costs, which are in the millions. I still think that dancers should get paid, though.

Prathios496 karma

Pretty sure Pepsi covers most of the production cost considering their name is on the halftime show

IBiteYou338 karma

From the Forbes link:

"Her arrangement will be similar to recent performers like Bruno Mars and Beyoncé: the league won’t give her a fee, but they’ll cover the show’s multi-million dollar production costs."

Prathios266 karma

I stand corrected.

Soda634766 karma

What was your favorite part of the whole experience? Did you get to meet Katy herself? If so, what was her personality like?

Prathios1416 karma

She showed up to our Props Cast rehearsal on Monday and said hi. That's the closest any of us got to meeting her. She seemed nice, bubbly personality. Also she has the cutest damn dog, it looks like a teddy bear.

Yoshamitsu757 karma

Do you think that you will be able to brag about this for years to come, or will your be forgotten in the sands of time, and all this will come to nothing?

Prathios1451 karma

I will brag about it until the end of time!

est94549 karma

  1. How old are you?

  2. What is your dream job?

  3. Sorry I'm so fixated on the shark costumes, but HOW CAN I GET MY HANDS ON ONE OF THEM?

Prathios1044 karma

  1. 22

  2. I want to build rockets. I'm a senior in Aerospace Engineering at ASU.

  3. I wish I knew! They were definitely the best, but I have no idea what is happening to any of the costumes.

cork_nc444 karma

Are you planning on having sex while wearing the costume, or is it too late to ask?

Come on, people. SOMEONE would ask eventually!

Prathios644 karma

We didn't get to keep the costumes :(

rejectingnormality387 karma

When you first saw your costume, what were you thinking when you found out that you were going to be a tree that looks like it has Down Syndrome in front of millions of viewers?

Prathios558 karma

I honestly didn't care what it looked like. It's Katy Perry so I knew it would be a little absurd. Just the opportunity was enough to outweigh the drawbacks to the costume.

velveteenrabbat386 karma

What were you wearing under the costume? Were you naked?

Prathios690 karma

We were in unitards with only boxer-briefs or compressions shorts on underneath, so pretty close.

GhostOfWinterfell335 karma

Can't remember if the palm trees did it but the sharks and the beach balls definitely had moving mouths. I can imagine since the beach balls don't have arms you could operate the mouth with a hand rather easily, but what about the sharks, how did they move the mouth bits with their hands in the fins?

Prathios534 karma

Our mouths definitely moved. We had to use our hands to flip the upper lip to simulate singing along to the chorus. For the sharks they would actually pull one hand out of the fin to operate the mouth.

GhostOfWinterfell230 karma

That's awesome, I thought it was a nice little touch to the costumes, you guys looked great out there. I'm not normally one to care at all about half-time shows but this one actually caught my attention and thought it was very well done (thanks in no small part to the backups/props). The 'beach' routine was my favorite so give yourself a pat on the back! Those sharks were show stealers though!

Prathios411 karma

Thanks I/We really appreciate that. All your praise definitely goes to the production crew and wardrobe crew though who were all absolutely phenomenal people to work with.

The whole beach routine never hit me until I saw this image of it

velveteenrabbat302 karma

Would you rather have been a shark? Do you think you would have done better than the left shark?

Prathios481 karma

I would have to say no because unfortunately my dance skills are much worse. I will say the shark costume was definitely the best out of all of them.

tkcom261 karma

If you have a chance, will you do it again?

(BTW, I also pick up mascot job now and then. Something like this would've been my dream gig for sure.)

Prathios402 karma

If I had the time I would do it again in a heartbeat. It was a very worthwhile experience. Definitely was not expecting how awesome it would feel on game day.

I really hope you get the chance to do it someday!

tkcom149 karma

The biggest mascot gig I've done in a stadium was in front of 20,000+ people at a Canadian Football game halftime. Performing in front of 70,000+ and millions more watching on TV would totally blow my mind. I bet there'll be quite a pressure to not fuck up but at the same time you'd want to enjoy the moment as much as possible.

Cherish the moment, bud. Cheers.

Prathios327 karma

The trees were really top heavy so all of us were hoping not to fall over in the middle of the performance. Me especially because my tree was the problem child of the group.

I really hope you get the opportunity to do something like we did!

abendchain314 karma

Just think of how famous you would be if you were the tree that did fall over. You'd be even more talked about than left shark.

Prathios77 karma

This is a really good point...

MetalFaceBaker199 karma

Was Snoop Dogg in one of the sharks?

Prathios391 karma

He was not. It was two of the chess pieces from the Dark Horse portion of her show.

Jdawgg92473 karma

so Snoop was one of the chess pieces from Dark Horse?

Prathios1192 karma

Get out.

broadicus172 karma

ok but honestly, how mad were you that katy didn't grind up on you?

Prathios383 karma

I wanted to kill /u/asumello61 and take his place.

lmi6165 karma

How many rehearsals did you have/how long in advance did you start preparing for the show? Also, what was the coolest thing you saw behind the scenes?

Prathios303 karma

We started on January 22nd. We had two sectionals on the 22nd and 23rd. Then on Sunday we had a put together rehearsal with the orbs (both opening and closing orbs). That Monday and Tuesday were another sort of sectional put together rehearsal. Wednesday-Friday were the full dress rehearsals in the stadium. The sectionals were shorter but the put-together and dress rehearsals were usually 3-4 hours long.

The coolest behind the scenes thing was definitely have Katy show up to our Props Cast rehearsal. I was a little star struck. Seeing the Lion for the first time was pretty awesome too.

lmi678 karma

Awesome! Thanks for responding! How exactly did the lion function? Do you know what was supporting it on the bottom?

Prathios207 karma

I'm trying to respond to everyone I can this is really exciting!

The lion was supported by a huge steel frame on wheels that went up into the structure of it. The outside of it was made by what I think was fiberglass covered in that gold foil.

guardgirlsarah146 karma

When did you guys know that the kids from our old high school would be there as well?

Prathios195 karma

When we showed up to the rehearsal that was at the school. SO MANY HIGH SCHOOL KIDS. I want to say there were at least 3-5 high schools participating. Mostly band kids and dancers.

toucansam29128 karma

  1. Did you get to meet any NFL players?
  2. Did you get free food?

Prathios201 karma

  1. I did not.

  2. Yes. They fed us at all but one rehearsal.

emo_corner_master124 karma

Patriots or Seahawks?

Prathios454 karma

Patriots! I'm a Denver Bronco fan so I was still bitter after last year.

carl2k1111 karma

Katy perry looks like a sweetheart. Is she a diva or bitch in person?

Prathios364 karma

I honestly can't say for sure. When she showed up to our rehearsal she seemed nice and said hi to all of us. During some of the full dress rehearsals she would get a little antsy. In my opinion I think that's because it was the biggest performance of her career and she wanted to do it right.

carl2k1112 karma

I like the performance. I enjoyed it.

Prathios349 karma

I actually haven't seen the whole thing yet. Can only see so much through the foam eyes of the palm tree.

braveonion98 karma

When you finish the AMA, you must say that you have to make like a tree and leave. It's a given.

With that being said, would you rather fight 100 duck-sized dancing sharks, or one dancing shark-sized duck?

Prathios246 karma

Depends. Is it 100 duck-sized dancing left sharks or 100 duck-sized dancing right sharks?

braveonion22 karma

50/50 split.

Prathios67 karma

That's too many Right Sharks. I'll go with the dancing shark-sized duck.

Flawfinger94 karma

Were you the guy she rubbed up on?

Prathios84 karma

That would be /u/asumello61

cara12345678992 karma

Did they at least let you keep the converse?

asumello61166 karma

Yup! They're actually pretty nice, too. Wearing em right now on Mill ave!

Jdawgg9225 karma


Prathios28 karma


Prathios159 karma

DeUlti88 karma

Would you have called for a pass play at the 1 yard line with 30 seconds left and 2 time outs?

Prathios199 karma

Not when I have an overrated quarterback and beast mode in the back field.

H0b5t3r85 karma

How did you change the scenery so quickly between songs? Also did you get to watch the game for free?

Prathios254 karma

The camera aimed over at Lenny and Katy while we waddled onto the stage. Definitely not as fast as it seems.

TasselHat79 karma

How did you manage to land such a sweet deal like this? Did someone approach you or did you seek it out?

Prathios162 karma

It was actually through Arizona State marching band. They posted about needing 30+ people for what was known then as the Sunshine Cast (Inflatables in California Gurls), and then a second post was made looking for 6'0" or taller slim guys for prop crew. The marching band was already set to play at the Super Bowl since nearly a year ago, so I'm assuming they saw that as an easy way to get people that actually have a clue about timings and musical cues.

velveteenrabbat70 karma

What were your thoughts while you were onstage?

Jdawgg92236 karma

What were your thoughts while you were onstage?

"Please don't fall, please don't fall, please don't fall" the costumes were very top-heavy and took a while to get used to. surprisingly, no one ever fell during any of the rehearsals.

Prathios202 karma

I will piggy back off of this and say at the last rehearsal I almost got knocked over twice.

swassie220 karma

I would pass out from embarrassment if I fell over during the live show. How would you even get up! I'd be lying there for the rest of the show like "this is my life now"

Prathios62 karma

There was absolutely no way to get up if we fell down. I'd probably just lay there and cry.

InternetDweller42067 karma

Did you all have fun or was it more like hard work?

Prathios110 karma

There was one point where we had to wear the costumes for an hour because we had no idea when we were going to do a full run through. That was the only time it felt like hard work. Other than that it was a blast.

Jizztacular57 karma

So uh... did you get a nice view?

Prathios119 karma

I was in the front, but I definitely made sure to include rotating along with my bouncing "choreography" to get a nice view. The other two definitely had a better view than me.

Jdawgg92100 karma

I was all the way back, stage right. Great view.

queenofthenerds57 karma

Were you the one twisting so much near the end that I was concerned you would topple over?

Prathios42 karma

That could have been any of us to be honest

wipes_front_to_back39 karma

Are you still wearing the costume? If not, did you get to keep it?

Prathios74 karma

I wouldn't want to wear that costume longer than I had to it was really inconvenient. Basically a backpack with a pvc pipe attached to it that held the costume up.

No we did not get to keep them.

beancurd232331 karma

Did you get to meet Missy Elliott or Lenny Kravitz? Were they nice?

Prathios76 karma

Missy walked by us a few times during rehearsal but that's about it. Anytime Lenny was around I was in costume so I don't know if anyone else got to meet him.

CaptainSoncho17 karma


Prathios54 karma


incaseanyonecared15 karma

Do you think you have what it takes to pursue a career as a dancing palm tree in the big leagues?

Prathios33 karma

Is the Super Bowl not the big leagues?

Fat_Chip10 karma

Who were you rooting for? Seahawks, patriots, or your friend who katy grinded on?

Prathios19 karma


Why would I root for my friend? I wanted his spot!