Best VMA Performances

The VMAs (Video Music Awards) were this past weekend and I’ve been watching these award shows since I was a little girl (since the TRL days). You know, back when people actually watched music videos. lol

Back in the old days, if I ever knew ‘Nsync or Britney Spears was performing, I’d record those performances (on a VHS tape) and later learn ALL of the choreography. I still know all of their choreography to THIS DAY. #NoShame

I haven’t been keeping up with the more recent VMAs since I’m not crazy about a lot of the mainstream artists of today. The only times my ears would perk up was if MJ, Beyonce, Kanye or Lady Gaga were performing. After I heard that Beyonce was performing this year I decided I had to tune in. #QueenBey

So here are some of my favorite VMA performances over the last few years. Apologies in advance if you see some of the same artists (sorry, not sorry).


1. Michael Jackson Medley (1995)

We all miss this man’s artistry, music and performances. This medley was one of the MANY performances that proved he was an ICON. And the VMAs was lucky enough to have the presence of such a legend.


2. Britney Spears & ‘Nsync – Baby One More Time/Tearin’ Up My Heart (1999)

Britney & ‘Nsync’s FIRST VMA performance…and the beginning of many. And how far have they come (well…at least, Britney and Justin Timberlake). Remember when I said I made sure to learn all of the choreography…well I still know this ‘Nsync routine. Please, no judgement. I was 11 years old and clearly had a lot of time on my hands.


3. Beyonce – Love on Top (2011)

The BEST pregnancy announcement, EVER! She had a killer performance, per usual and then surprised the whole world by flashing that beautiful baby bump. And to top it off, watching Jay’s reaction and Kanye’s excitement just made it that much better. Definitely one of most memorable VMA performances.


4. Britney Spears – I’m A Slave 4 U (2001)

This was the moment that Britney Spears really grew up and (in my opinion) had her sexiest performance. Everyone loved her new sound, image, confidence and I was obsessed with her abs. And who could forget her dancing with the live snake!! This was definitely Britney at her prime.


5. Lady Gaga – Applause (2013)

Lady Gaga’s costumes and performances never make much sense, but that’s what makes her so unique. This performance was just that. And the more I watch her perform, the more I appreciate her as an artist.


6. Madonna – Vogue (1990)

Everyone always talks about Madonna’s Like a Virgin 1984 performance, which I completely understand why. It was shocking, a bit uncomfortable and definitely original. But I enjoyed Madonna’s Vogue performance because it introduced vogue dancing to the mainstream public. And it’s still a popular dance style today.


7. ‘Nsync & Michael Jackson – Pop (2001)

There were a ton of popular boy bands around this time. Backstreet Boys, 98º, O-Town, etc. But ‘Nsync always had a special place in my heart and this performance was unlike any other. They had the privilege of sharing the stage VMA stage with MJ, the KING of Pop! Obviously it was a huge deal, and probably every boyband’s dream!


8. Madonna, Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera, Missy Elliott – Opening Medley (2003)

This performance includes the CRAZIEST moment in VMA history. But before we get to THAT moment let’s talk about some other things. First of all we have Pop Princess, miss B. Spears entering the stage and paying tribute to Madonna’s Like a Virgin performance. Next, her “rival” Christina Aguilera joins in on the duet. Then Madonna (Queen of Pop) joins the other ladies on stage and things get weird. Out of nowhere Madonna kisses Britney Spears and everyone just loses it. Even Justin Timberlake’s reaction was priceless. Then she kisses Christina….oh yeah, and Missy Elliott also joins the stage.


9. Beyonce – Lemonade Medley (2016)

Wow, just WOW!!! Last, but certainly not least was last night’s 15 minute performance from Beyonce (YEP, 15 minutes). And it was the highlight of the whole night. But are we all that surprised…? I’m certainly not. Beyonce had the vocals, choreography, high production value, and brought the house down. She brought her visual album to life! If anyone doesn’t rank this as one of THE BEST VMA performances in history….then I’m just speechless (and heartbroken). All hail Queen Bey!!!



It’s safe the say anything can happen at the VMA’s. If there aren’t any shocking moments then MTV hasn’t done their job. Even though I definitely feel older watching these award shows every year, I’m still happy that the artists I grew up listening to can still bring it and deliver amazing performances.