One of the most talked-about moments of Sunday night’s MTV Video Music Awards didn’t even take place on the Madison Square Garden stage. While everyone was eagerly anticipating the performances by Video Vanguard recipient Rihanna or the triumphant returning Britney Spears, out of nowhere came Teyana Taylor — starring in Kanye West’s “Fade” music video — and she completely stole the show.
Even more unexpected? Her cardio-jam performance looked like it could have taken place at the 1984 MTV Video Music Awards.
Clad in a teeny-tiny, Jamie Lee Curtis-in-Perfect Jazzercise leotard seemingly held together with sweat and prayers, the incredibly lithe and limber, taut and toned Taylor totally got her Flashdance on. She took her passion and made it happen. She was a maniac, maniac on the floor — and then, for the video’s bizarre finale, she was a catwoman, reclining on a bed composed of live sheep.
West was given four minutes by MTV to do whatever he wanted at this year’s VMAs — and presumably salvage what was one of the snooziest VMA telecast in years. His rambling speech — which, of course, went way over four minutes — wasn’t nearly as viral or buzzy as last year’s mic-dropping tour de force, when he announced his intention to run for president in 2020. But when ‘Ye eventually introduced “Fade,” the VMAs finally had something worth tweeting about — and a new MTV star.
Of course, many people out there are probably already familiar with singer/dancer Taylor. But for those who just discovered her via the VMAs this week, here’s a primer on the phenomenal “Fade” bombshell:
–She’s engaged to NBA player Iman Shumpert. And that was him, making out with her naked in the shower stall and lying next to her on the above-mentioned sheep-bed in “Fade.”
–She had a baby this past December. Yes, just eight months ago. And if that isn’t motivation to enroll in some Jazzercise classes, we don’t know what is.
–She was a judge on the most recent season of the MTV talent competition America’s Best Dance Crew. Clearly, she was very qualified for the job.
–Her debut album, VII, came out on Kanye West’s G.O.O.D. Music record label in 2014. It featured guest appearances from Chris Brown, Fabolous, Pusha T, and Yo Gotti.
–Taylor’s new single is the Adina Howard-sampling “Freak On,” featuring Chris Brown. Her sophomore album comes out later this year. We can’t wait to see its music video.