For the first time, the VMAs were hosted at the Barclays Centers in Brooklyn, NY without an actual host. The performers and presenters took over the stage with announcing nominees and winners while giving their own commentary throughout the show. Here is a recap of the performances, the winners of the awards and comments about the show overall.
Lady Gaga opened the show with ‘Applause’
Miley Cyrus ‘We Can’t Stop’ and a medley with Robin Thicke, 2 Chainz, and Kendrick Lamar.
Kayne West performed ‘Blood on the Leaves’
Justin Timberlake and N’SYNC performed a medley including ‘Bye, Bye, Bye’
Drake performed ‘Were Going Home’/ ‘Started From the Bottom’
Bruno Mars performed ‘Gorilla’
Katy Perry closed the show with ‘Roar’
Video of the Year-Justin Timberlake ‘Mirrors’
Best Male Video-Bruno Mars ‘Locked Out of Heaven’
Artist to Watch-Austin Mahone ‘What About Love’
Best Song of the Summer-One Direction ‘Best Song Ever’
Best Video with a Social Message-Macklemore and Ryan Lewis featuring Mary Lambert in ‘Same Love’
Best Female Video-Taylor Swift ‘I Knew You Were in Trouble’
Best Hip Hop Video-Macklemore and Ryan Lewis featuring Ray Dalton ‘Can’t Hold Us’
Best Pop Video-Selena Gomez ‘Come and Get It’
Best Rock Video-Thirty Seconds to Mars ‘Up in the Air’
Best Collaboration-Pink featuring Nate Ruess ‘Just Give Me a Reason’
The performances were shocking and unexpected and audience’s reactions were natural of booing, applause and the occasional standing ovation. Yet, it is surprising how much the artists took the stage for themselves and even if doing a medley, still made it all about them.
The first one was Justin Timberlake and N’SYNC. Timberlake would not be famous today if N’SYNC was not a hit and likewise, Cyrus was grinding on one person while the others danced. For a performance, it is understandable that there are backup dancers, but they should not be overshadowed by the actual performer. Some could argue that they did better than the person being featured.
It also may be safe to say that it is better to go solo like Mars does, for example, so that the performance can stand out without too much extra in the background. The opening and closing performances will be talked about for a while and some will argue whether or not Timberlake stole the show. Overall, the show really had mixed reactions throughout social media. Was it better without a host; was there a need for one like most other reward shows? Or, did the show speak for itself of what music and artists have become today?