The Captain's Log

The Student News Site of Christopher Newport University

The Captain's Log

The Captain's Log

The 2023 VMA Awards

The wins, the performances, and the celebrities

On September 12, the annual MTV Video Music Awards was held in Newark, New Jersey. Hosted by Nicki Minaj, the show was full of entertaining performances and honoring some of the biggest artists of the year. 


The show began with audiences on their feet for a performance by Lil Wayne, singing his new song, “Kat Food”. Then Olivia Rodrigo took to the stage to perform her new songs “Vampire” and “Get Him Back!”. The pop star reminded the audience of her background in acting with a fake stage malfunction used to transition between songs. 


Story continues below advertisement

The first award of the night, Best Pop, was announced by NSYNC and was the boy band’s first appearance together in 5 years. The winner, Taylor Swift was visibly excited about the reunion, asking them if they were planning something. The boyband also handed her friendship bracelets when she went in for a hug. 


Swift would go on to win 9 out of 11 categories that she was nominated for. These categories include, Song of the Year, Video of the Year, and Artist of the year. These wins made her the second most awarded artist in VMAs history. She also tied for the most wins in one night. 


Other notable winners of the night include Stray Kid’s “S-Class” for Best K-Pop, SZA’s “Shirt” for best R&B, Anitta’s “Funk Rave” for Best Latin, Rema and Selena Gomez’s “Calm Down” for Best Afrobeats, Nicki Minaj’s “Super Freaky Girls” for Best Hip-pop, Karol G and Shakira’s “TQG” for Best Collaboration, and Ice Spice took home Best New Artist. 


Outside of the awards, the show had some show stopping performances. Cardi B and Megan thee Stallion performed their new song “Bongos” for the first time live. Demi Lovato showcased her vocals with a performance of the rock versions of “Heart Attack”, “Sorry Not Sorry”, and “Cool For The Summer”.  Anitta showed off her dance moves while performing her songs “Used to Be” and “Funk Rave”. Doja Cat stuns the crows with a performance of her new songs “Attention”, “Paint the Town Red”, and “Demons”. Nicki Minaj performed “Last Time I Saw You” and surprised fans with an exclusive song off her new album, Pink Friday 2. There were also amazing performances from Kalii, Karol G, Reneé Rapp, Peso Pluma, Stray Kids, The Warning, Fall Out Boy, Tomorrow X Together, Måneskin, and Kelsea Ballerini. 


There were also some artists that were honored this year. Shakira was awarded the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard award.  The award is usually dedicated to artists with “outstanding contributions” or a “profound impact” on music videos and popular cultures. Shakira is officially the best selling artist of all time, with 95 million records sold. She then gave an iconic performance of a medley of her most popular songs including “She Wolf”, “Whenever, Wherever”, and “Hips Don’t Lie”. 


The VMAs also honored Diddy with the MTV Global Icon Award. His oldest daughter joined Mary J. Blige to announce the award. He then gave a performance with a few special guests including Yung Miami, Keyshia Cole, and his son. 

Metro Boomin’ dedicated his performance to his late mother, who was killed last year and there was also a special performance in honor of the 50th anniversary of hip-pop with artists such as Nicki Minaj, Lil Wayne, L.L Cool J., Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five, and more. 


The night was full of fun performances and interesting crowd reactions that left fans talking about it days later. However, with the WGA strike ongoing, there weren’t as many scripted moments as there usually are. Fans aren’t disappointed though. Many seemed to prefer it.  

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Captain's Log

Your donation will support the student journalists of Christopher Newport University. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Captain's Log

Comments (0)

All The Captain's Log Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *