Earlier this week, the MTV VMAs honored Missy Elliott with the Video Vanguard Award, and for the occasion, Elliott brought triple-threat Alyson Stoner on stage with her as she performed a seven-minute medley of her greatest hits. Stoner’s sharp dance moves set social media ablaze, particularly because many viewers recognized her as the little girl from Elliott’s iconic “Work It” music video.
While it’s hard to imagine the video without Stoner now, she recently revealed that the memorable moment almost didn’t happen. Speaking with TMZ while traveling through an airport Wednesday morning, Stoner — who was 9 when she appeared in “Work It” — explained that she nearly didn’t get to audition for the video due to scheduling conflicts with a sibling’s sports obligation.
“I actually didn’t almost go to the audition,” Stoner said. “My sister, I think, had a scrimmage. My parents said, ‘We’ve spent too much time focused on Alyson.’ I think the scrimmage got canceled. I ended up going [to the ‘Work It’ audition]. My sisters knew [Elliott] as an artist, my parents didn’t. They said, ‘Yeah, it’ll be great!’”
Stoner also said she wasn’t told the real meaning or innuendoes behind “Work It” for years, and she credits that to the edited version of the song being used when she showed up to film the video.
This isn’t the only interesting tidbit she shared about her work with Elliott and her team. After Monday’s VMAs ceremony, Stoner said on Twitter that she was tapped for the performance just “a day before,” but added “those grooves don’t leave your system.” Stoner and Elliott had a warm and reflective exchange shortly after.
Let’s talk quick facts.. HiHat hit me up a day before to jump in, said “do your thing” and then it was showtime. 😅😳🙏🏽💁🏻♀️ But those grooves don’t leave your system. ❤️ https://t.co/N1ufMVu2uv— Alyson Stoner (@AlysonStoner) August 27, 2019
.@AlysonStoner it’s been 17 years since we did Work IT and over the years people always ask me where is that lil girl from your video “Work It”🙌🏾 so I couldn’t of done this vma performance without you there! Love you🤗❤️ thank you so much https://t.co/nT0qtRe1Mi— Missy Elliott (@MissyElliott) August 27, 2019
Love you. Forever grateful. Thankful for your warmth, diligence, spirit. It’s the greatest honor to celebrate you with the world. Still geekin!!! ❤️❤️ https://t.co/be5GMh437m— Alyson Stoner (@AlysonStoner) August 27, 2019
Talk about a moment!