Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Usher's VMA Performance To Be Worthy Of A 'King'

Awards-show executive producer teases Ush's 'best televised dance routine' in years.
By James Montgomery

Usher's VMA rehearsal on September 9
Photo: Ciel VanderVeen/MTV

LOS ANGELES — The success of Usher's "OMG" is as much a testament to his unyielding popularity as an artist as it is his ability to, well, dance his ass off. That's particularly apparent in the Video Music Award-nominated video for the song, which features Ush and a bevy of beauties popping, locking, pivoting and posing in ways we never thought possible. Quite simply, the man can move.

So when it came time to plot out his VMA performance, well, Usher's team -- and the brain trust behind the show -- didn't have a whole lot of trouble coming up with a concept. The dancing was going to be front and center. The only question was: How could they take things to the next level.

"We all sat in a room and came up with a concept for the stage, and then we took that concept to Usher," VMA executive producer Dave Sirulnick told MTV News. "We said to him, 'We want to do the best televised dance routine that you've done in years. Let's show why you're the king.' "

And Ush's Sunday night performance is very much an affair worthy of royalty. Full of eye-popping moves, hip-dipping dancers and more special effects than a Hollywood blockbuster, it makes full use of not just the epic VMA stage (which practically engulfs the entirety of Nokia Theater), but the space behind it.

While we can't give away too many details, based on the rehearsals we saw Thursday, the off-the-wall choreography is only part of the attraction. There are lasers and LED lights, stunts, slides and even some props. Like we said, it's kind of like a Hollywood blockbuster. And kind of a coronation too. After all, Usher is the king.

The 27th annual MTV Video Music Awards will be broadcast live from the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles on Sunday. The party starts with MTV News' VMA Pre-Show at 8 p.m., followed by the main event at 9 p.m. ET/PT. Fans can go to VMA.MTV.com (or text VMA to 97979 if they are Verizon subscribers) to vote for Best New Artist from now through Sunday.

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