Selena Gomez performs “Come & Get It” at the 2013 Billboard Music Awards.
Award shows are kind of like high school — watching from home is like being stuck at the nerdy table, but being at the actual event and hobnobbing with celebs is kind of like being asked to the senior prom as a freshman! Unfortunately we can’t transport y’all to tonight’s 2013 Billboard Music Awards, but we CAN provide you with the next best option: a beautifully curated list of the night’s best, weirdest, prettiest, loudest, craziest, most rhinestone-studded and scandalous moments! So, without further delay, check out 10 of our favorite, most unforgettable moments from tonight’s Billboard Music Awards!
1.) All-Justin Bieber-Everything: Tonight was DEFINITELY all about Justin Bieber! The 19-year-old singer performed twice — once solo where he played a flight attendant (we DIE!!) for a performance of “Take You,” and second, alongside his musical bestie/soul-mate/co-studded-jacket-wearer, will.i.am, for an epic collaboration of “#thatPOWER.” Justin also took home a handful of of hardware — Miley Cyrus presented The Biebs with Top Male Artist (also, did she or did she not MAJORLY roll her eyes after announcing him as the winner? Anyone?), and Cee Lo presented JB with the Milestone Award. Justin mayyyy have had one or two haters in the audience (did anyone else hear that chorus of boos?), but he’s clearly doing just fine! Because in addition to Top Male Artist and the Milestone Award, Justin also snagged Top Social Artist award. Take that, anti-Beliebers! UPDATE: Miley’s eye-roll was real!
2.) Selena Gomez performs “Come & Get It”: Controversial bindi and all, Selena Gomez took the stage at tonight’s Billboard Awards to perform her smash “Come & Get It.” Rather than her “Hunger Games”/Katniss’ “Girl On Fire” ensemble, Sel rocked a floor-length gold gown. But don’t think for a second that all that extra fabric stopped Selena from rolling on the floor and nailing her choreography with the best of ’em! Unfortunately, we were KINDA bummed when rumors that Selena and Justin were sitting together tonight didn’t pan out, but watching her hug Taylor Swift when Tay won her Top Artist award totally made up for it. Kind of.
3.) Madonna DOES NOT/WILL NOT AGE: Madonna earned the Top Touring Artist award at tonight’s 2013 Billboard Music Awards, and, as we suspected, THE LADY DOES NOT AGE. We spotted a total of 0.0 wrinkles, crow’s feet, mannequin lines, and/or body fat, making her not only the top touring artist, but living breathing proof that the fountain of youth does exist in some faraway, remote location you have to have as much money as Madonna to get to. And to further cement her agelessness, Madge took the stage in chains, fur, fishnets, and NO PANTS to accept her award. #OurSpiritAnimal
4.) Taylor Swift performs “22” for the first time live and pauses for a DANCE BREAKDOWN with the Jabbawockeez: We’ve already seen Taylor Swift’s “22” video, but we could not WAIT to watch the professional Diet Pepsi drinker perform her “live young and be free!” anthem live. Taylor arrived onstage via various modes of transportation (bike, clothing rack, hot model, etc.), where she not only wore the most adorable crystal-studded unicorn T-shirt ever (PROPS X 1000000), but she paused for a dance breakdown with “America’s Best Dance Crew” Season 1 winners, The Jabbawockeez. We’ll also say that girlfriend totally WON THE NIGHT! Tay snagged the Billboard Artist of the Year award, the Billboard 200 Album of the Year award, Female Artist of the Year, Top Digital Artist, and Top Billboard 200 Artist, as well as all the country awards! NO WORDS.
Taylor Swift pulled off a unicorn shirt! (Not sure why, but she did!)
Check out more unforgettable moments from the 2013 Billboard Music Awards after the jump!
5.) Pitbull and Christina Aguilera bring out A-ha for a surprise cameo: This isn’t the first time we’ve seen Mr. 305 and Christina Aguilera perform their collabo “Feel This Moment” at an award show (remember their 2012 American Music Awards performance?). That said, tonight’s Billboard Music Awards performance was extra special since the duo totally surprised the audience by bringing out A-ha lead singer Morten Harket to top off the track with his trademark falsetto “IN A DAY OR TW-OOOOOO”! (Because Pit and Xtina’s “Feel This Moment” samples A-ha’s “Take On Me,” remember?)
6.) Nicki Minaj performs “High School / gives Lil Wayne a VERY enthusiastic lap dance: We know they say you’re not supposed to hook up with anyone at the office, but does Lil Wayne being Nicki Minaj’s YMCMB Record Label boss even count? No, right? Great! Because Nicki and her boss man, Lil Wayne, hit the Billboard Music Award stage to perform “High School” (you know, the video where there’s lot of flirting and cleavage), and even though Wayne claims he refused to touch Nicki during the actual video shoot, all bets were off at tonight’s performance. Meaning, if you were ever curious to know what Nicki Minaj grinding all up on Weezy looked like, then tonight is THE NIGHT to see it. And even though he’s technically her boss, it didn’t look like Wayne was complaining one bit.
7.) Macklemore & Ryan Lewis WIN BIG and perform “Thrift Shop”: The tank top lovers and Hangout Fest standout performers took the stage to perform the song that changed it all: “Thrift Shop.” Performing to a super-pumped Shark Face Gang, the power trio of Macklemore, Ryan Lewis, and bass-voiced Wanz performed their anthem like pros. And, in addition to their Top Rap Song win, we really should call to your attention Macklemore’s unreal jacket, which, if we didn’t know any better, we’d say came right out of Henry IV’s closet.
8.) Miguel almost decapitates a fan, continues his quest to bring authentic R&B back: We’ve said this before, and we’ll say it over and over again until EVERYONE hears us: MIGUEL IS THE EFFING BOMB. And if Mig’s “#Beautiful” collaboration with queen Mariah Carey didn’t have you convinced, then just watch the kid SLAY the vocal game dead during his performance of “Adorn” on tonight’s Billboard Awards. And no, you’re not hallucinating — Miguel WAS in fact wearing an expertly tailored all-white-everything ensemble, and yes, he did do a full split, in the AIR, and did TOTALLY land on a fan’s head midair. ACK! Luckily, all parties were OK in the end!
9.) Icona Pop becomes One Direction-caliber famous: Look, it’s not like we’re saying Swedish beauties Icona Pop weren’t super famous already (cue their shouty contribution to Chiddy Bang‘s “Mind Your Manners” and their pop anthem “I Love It“). It’s just that sometimes there’s a moment in an every artist’s career where everything just clicks! And we think tonight was that moment for Icona Pop. Performing “I Love It,” the two gals stormed the stage like old pros, not to mention the ladies get ENDLESS points for wearing latex and not shedding A BEAD OF SWEAT. Like, 24/7 matte-ness, ALL THE TIME. If that’s not a “most outstanding moment of the night,” then we don’t know what is.
10.) Chris Brown out-dances himself/doubles as a Cirque du Soleil performer: Think what you want about Chris Brown (we’ve got some thoughts, too) but the man can MOVE! Chris took the stage to perform his jam “Fine China,” and yep, our eagle ears did hear a few bum notes here and there (maybe drink some lemon water with honey, or something, Chris), but then again, how do you expect a man doing LITERALLY SIDEWAYS, ARMS-FREE CARTWHEELS to keep perfect pitch!? That’s right, you don’t.
Photo credit: Getty Images/Gifulmation