After Madonna’s sobering, heartfelt eulogy to the late, great Michael Jackson opened the 2009 MTV VMAs, Janet Jackson, along with some of the top dancers and choreographers in the world, paid tribute to her late brother in a way that made the most sense: a room-shaking, mind-bending pop spectacle of theatrics, special effects, and, of course, seemingly superhuman dance. It was an absolutely arresting performance, (I felt overwhelming privileged to be standing stage left watching the performance as the entirety of Radio City screamed as Janet reenacted “Scream”), wrought with power, emotion, and new meaning.
One more time, for one night only, Michael Jackson, whose performances brought sheer, unadulterated, ecstatic joy to his fans, danced again through the power of Janet’s love and energy.
Watch Janet Jackson’s 2009 VMA performance again, and watch the trailer for the new documentary, Michael Jackson’s This Is It, out October 28.
And don’t miss the MTV exclusive presentation of “The Making of Janet Jackson’s Video Music Awards Tribute Performance,” on Saturday, September 19 at 12:30pm.