You know you took home the awards. You know who took home even more awards. It’s time to take a look at the star-studded lineup of performers at the 2016 Billboard Music Awards and whose stints are a showstopper. Here are eight performances from the BBMA’s you don’t want to miss.
Britney Spears – Medley
The night kicked off with Britney, b**ch! Suddenly it’s 2002 all over again when the 34-year-old pop star, in her red hot jacket and bikini and best shape ever, hit the stage and performed a medley of hits that spans throughout her career: “Work Bitch”, “Womanizer”, “I Love Rock N’ Roll”, “Breathe On Me”, “I’m a Slave 4 U”, “Touch of My Hand” and “Toxic”. Britney is also this year’s recipient of the Millennium Award, joining the likes of Beyoncé and Whitney Houston in the hall of fame.
Celine Dion – “The Show Must Go On” (Queen cover)
Her heart will go on and so does the show. It’s no secret Celine Dion has had a few rough months following the passing of her brother and husband. In their memories, the Canadian songstress delivered a heart-wrenching rendition of Queen’s “The Show Must Go On”, accompanied by violinist Lindsey Stirling. The 48-year-old singer also received Billboard’s ICON Award, which was presented to her by Seal and her son René-Charles.
Rihanna – “Love On The Brain”
It must be love on our brain we’re feeling for Rihanna in this powerful performance. The singer boasted her vocals in a fan favourite and hidden gem off Anti, “Love On The Brain”. The effects, lighting and RiRi’s outfit itself sure do remind us of last year’s “B**ch Better Have My Money” number. We hope she’s making this a thing ’cause these shades of green are gorgeous!
Troye Sivan – “Youth”
Those! Dance! Moves! Bringing his “Youth” to the lineup of the industry’s top-tier performers, the Australian newcomer didn’t disappoint on the biggest stage of his career yet. There Troye was also named Kia’s One To Watch artist of 2016.
Ariana Grande – “Dangerous Woman” / “Into You”
Ariana Grande totally nailed her first high-profile performance since the release of her new album, Dangerous Woman. Despite minor technical issues in the beginning of “Dangerous Woman”, the 22-year-old pop star managed to quickly land beautifully on “Into You” with dancers and special effects.
DNCE – “Cake By The Ocean”
Wherever DNCE is, there’s always party. We’re talking more than balloons and confetti, of course. The Joe Jonas-led, Moschino-clad band hyped up the crowd with established summer anthem “Cake By The Ocean” but this time there’s a catch: guitarist JinJoo Lee took a solo and bassist Cole Whittle flung around his guitar to wrap up the performance.
Kesha – “It Ain’t Me Babe” (Bob Dylan cover)
The arena suddenly hushed when Kesha took the stage with singer-songwriter Ben Folds to deliver this tribute to Bob Dylan that almost didn’t happen due to the rapper’s ongoing legal battle with Dr. Drake’s record label. But no more of that now. See how the duo beautifully turned the rock classic into an easy-listening, Adele-esque ballad.
Madonna and Stevie Wonder – “Nothing Compares 2 U” / “Purple Rain” (Prince cover)
Madonna’s tribute to the late icon is easily the most-anticipated performance of this year’s Billboard Music Awards. Our take is if anyone’s going to do a Prince justice, it’s the queen herself. Coming from an appropriately picked out purple throne, Madonna sang “Nothing Compares 2 U” (a Prince song made famous by Sinead O’Connor) before the surprise appearance of Stevie Wonder who took the lead in “Purple Rain”.