— MTV (@MTV) August 29, 2016
We hardly had time to digest Kanye West’s sexually charged/ workout-themed video premiere starring Teyana Taylor for “Fade” and its shockingly bizarre finale, when Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award recipient and queen of the evening Rihanna took the stage for her second performance at Sunday night’s MTV Video Music Awards ceremony at New York City’s Madison Square Garden.
Once again, Rihanna put on an impressive, energetic performance displaying her versatility as an artist. Following the pre-show performances, she had kicked off the main event with a perfectly choreographed medley that set the bar high for the artists who would take the spotlight after her. For her second performance, she turned the stage into a massive dance party — which she dominated — as she gyrated to the reggae-infused “Rude Boy,” followed by “What’s My Name. She then punctuated the second act with her summer hit, “Work.”
The singer will perform a total of four times Sunday night, in addition to accepting the prestigious lifetime award given by MTV to the most prolific and influential artists. In accepting the Vanguard, she joins an elite group of musicians that includes Beyoncé, Kanye West and Justin Timberlake as a recipient.