Following the same futuristic theme and bright-pink color scheme as the song’s music video, Gaga, Grande and a troop of dancers delivered intense choreography on a wild, multi-level set.
Wearing masks designed by Cecilio Castrillo, Gaga and her dancers introduced the medley with a minute or so of “911” before launching into “Rain on Me.” At the end of the performance, the pair entered an elevator-like booth that was spun out of view by a dancer, but Gaga soon returned and sat down at a piano that seemed to be shaped like a brain, playing solo before returning to the main stage and roaring into the first single from the album, “Stupid Love.”
“Rain on Me” was nominated for a staggering seven awards, including video of the year, song of the year, best collaboration, best pop, best cinematography, best visual effects and best choreography — and Gaga won artist of the year
Gaga who was awarded the first-ever Tri-Con Award, also won the Best Collaboration award for “Rain on Me.” She dedicated the award to Grande saying: “Girl, this is for us. I feel like when we were in the studio together, we turned our tears that felt like endless rainfall into diamonds, and I will treasure those diamonds forever.”
Due to the number of nods for “Rain on Me,” both Grande and Gaga received the most nominations at this year’s awards, totaling nine each.
This marks Grande’s fifth performance on the VMAs stage, with her most recent being in 2018, when she sang “God Is a Woman.” On the other hand, Gaga hasn’t performed at the VMAs since 2013, when she performed “Applause” from her album “Artpop.”
Miley Cyrus, The Weeknd, BTS and others also performed at Sunday night’s VMAs, which was broadcast live from several different audience-less locations in New York City.