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Mars ‘grateful’ for bowl gig

Before Bruno Mars performs in front of the biggest audience of his career at the Super Bowl, he talked about it in front of a much smaller crowd Thursday.

The pop crooner appeared at the Rose Theater in the Time Warner Center to promote his halftime performance Sunday at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J., where the Seattle Seahawks will play the Denver Broncos.

He said he hopes to get people dancing and smiling.

The “NFL is such a prestigious stage ... that they give the new guy a shot, and I’m so grateful for that,” Mars said. “No, I haven’t been able to take it in. Not yet. Come Sunday, I will.”

Mars’ hits include “Locked Out of Heaven,” “Grenade” and “Just the Way You Are.” He won the best pop vocal album Grammy Award for “Unorthodox Jukebox” this week.

He’s due to visit Buffalo’s First Niagara Center on June 30.

Lessons in Beyoncé

Beyoncé is one of the world’s most scrutinized pop stars, and now that study is moving to academia.

The Department of Women’s and Gender Studies at Rutgers University is offering a course called “Politicizing Beyoncé.”

Kevin Allred, a doctoral student who is teaching the class, tells the university’s online news site that he is using Beyoncé’s career as a way to explore American race, gender and sexual politics.

The class supplements an analysis of Beyoncé’s videos and lyrics with readings from Black feminists. Allred says he’s seeking to help students think more critically about media consumption.

Song stripped of Oscar nom

The motion picture academy says it’s rescinding the Academy Awards original song nomination for “Alone Yet Not Alone” from the film of the same name after it discovered composer Bruce Broughton emailed members of the group’s music branch to make them aware of his submission during the nominations voting period.

Broughton serves as a member of the music branch’s executive committee and is a former governor for the academy.

Academy President Cheryl Boone Isaacs said that using a position within the organization to personally promote one’s own Oscar submission creates the appearance of an unfair advantage.

An additional nominee will not be named.

Mirrren wins the pudding pot

Helen Mirren is being honored as woman of the year by Harvard University’s Hasty Pudding Theatricals.

The 68-year-old Mirren was in Massachusetts on Thursday for a parade and roast, and to receive her ceremonial pudding pot.

She won the 2007 best actress Oscar for her role as Queen Elizabeth II in “The Queen” and has been nominated on three other occasions. She also appeared in “Age of Consent, “Gosford Park” and “The Madness of King George.”

Hasty Pudding Theatricals is America’s oldest undergraduate drama troupe. Its awards are presented annually to performers who have made a lasting and impressive contribution to entertainment.