By: Amanda Meyer//
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Photo by: Andrew Nucatola

For as long as I can remember, the MTV Video Music Awards were always one of the most important events in the entertainment industry for me. My first real memory of the VMAs was in 2001. I was upstairs in my room and my mom was screaming from downstairs, “Amanda! Come downstairs, Britney’s about to go on stage!” That was Britney’s iconic performance of “I’m a Slave 4 U” with Banana the snake.

Now, let’s fast forward to August 2016. This year the VMAs were being held at Madison Square Garden; one of the most amazing and magical places in New York City. I’ve been to countless concerts at The Garden but never would’ve thought that I would get the chance to attend the VMAs there! I went to the award show in 2013 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn and attended the outside performances for the 2015 show in LA, so attending this year wouldn’t be my first attempt at getting in.

About a week ago I received confirmation that I would be in the pit (AKA the floor, right next to the stage!). My first thought was “Oh my God, I’m going to the VMAs at the most famous venue in the whole world and Britney’s making her VMA comeback performance!” But let’s not forget 2007, a bad time for Britney, when she gave her very infamous performance of ‘Gimme More’.

On Sunday, I prepared myself by taking longer than usual to do my hair and makeup, and to put together the perfect outfit (shout out to Urban Outfitters and Zara!). When we arrived, my friends and I waited outside in the disgusting heat and were eventually placed in a theater to wait to move into the arena.

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Photo by: Andrew Nucatola

Finally, it was time to go inside! We were SO close to the stage! There were a few hundred of us on the floor, all squished and packed in right next to the stage. We were all so excited and freaking out. 9pm was showtime, and Rihanna hit the stage for her first of many sets of the night. It was my first time seeing her live and I thought she did amazing. I was so entertained by each performance she gave that night and it was awesome to see her not only perform new music, but to throw it back to the oldies too!

Aside from Rihanna, it was also pretty cool to see Beyoncé! I’m not the biggest fan of her, but her performance was so artistic. The biggest moment for me was Britney! I haven’t seen her live in about a year now and I was so nervous to see how this performance would come out. She did her latest single, ‘Make Me…’ with G-Eazy and went into his hit, ‘Me, Myself & I’ where Britney covered Bebe Rexha’s vocals. It was definitely a great comeback performance!

Aside from performances, it was just so cool to be in the same room as so many legendary musicians! Kanye’s 4-minute speech was great and it was an amazing feeling to be in the same room while that happened. Another key moment for me was seeing Joanne the Scammer in the flesh! She was sitting in the section behind us just rocking out the whole time and having the time of her life. Can we also discuss Drake coming into the show late but redeeming himself by sharing his love for Rihanna with the whole world? I almost cried!

Whether or not you’re a fan of all of the performers or cared for any of the awards, it’s an amazing event all-around. Everything was covered, from fashion, music, the Olympics, music videos and more. The 2016 VMAs were a hit and I’m so glad I was able to see it all pan out live in front of me at Madison Square Garden!

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