Nicki Minaj took to the stage at the MTV VMAs last night, at put on a blistering, career-spanning set. Minaj was also receiving the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award at the ceremony.
The rapper had been co-hosting the award show with Jack Harlow and LL Cool J in Newark, New Jersey, at the Prudential Center. During her performance, Minaj took the audience through many of her biggest hits from across her career, including ‘Anaconda’, ‘Bees In The Trap’, ‘Moment 4 Life’, ‘Super Bass’, and ‘Monster’ – although the latter was just her verse from the Kayne West track.
Minaj then played her new single ‘Super Freaky Girl’ during the show. She was joined by a swathe of male and female dancers in performing a provocatively choreographed dance on a neon-lit stage adorned with dancing poles and podiums.
After collecting the Video Vanguard Award, Minaj gave thanks to several artists who had helped her over the years. She said, “I wish that Whitney Houston and Michael Jackson were here. I wish that people understood what they meant and what they were going through. I wish people took mental health seriously, even for the people you think have perfect lives. I wish Pop Smoke, Nipsey Hussle and Juice WRLD were still here.”
Amongst the leaders of the award nominations were Kendrick Lamar and Lil Nas X with seven nominations each, Harry Styles and Doja Cat (six each) and Taylor Swift (five). Eminem and Snoop Dogg performed a metaverse-inspired rendition of the recent track ‘From The D 2 To The LBC’.
The duo joined several other artists in performing at the award ceremony, including Red Hot Chili Peppers, Jack Harlow – who played ‘First Class’ with Fergie – and Lizzo, who did her new single ‘2 Be Loved (Am I Ready)’.
Check out the footage of Minaj’s performance below.