Everything You Need To Know for the 2023 MTV Video Music Awards!

The 2023 MTV Video Music Awards airing Tuesday, September 12th are full of debuts of new singles and performances from iconic artists. Let’s take a look at some of this year’s highly anticipated categories and top nominees!

The 2023 MTV Video Music Awards are full of unprecedented performances and awards. This year, get ready to see artists who haven’t taken the VMA stage in years! The award show takes place Tuesday, September 12th at 8:00 p.m. ET/PT live from the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey.

Nicki Minaj is set to emcee the VMAs, announcing the performers, presenters, and winners. The seven-time VMA winner will also perform her new single, “The Last Time I Saw You.” This is her second year hosting and performing.

The rapper and singer Saweetie will also host the 90-minute pre-show along with Nessa, Dometi Pongo, and Kevan Kenney, airing from 6:30 to 8:00 p.m. ET/PT.

Honorary Awards

Shakira – Video Vanguard Award

The Latin singer Shakira will receive the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award, which honors legendary recording artists like Nicki Minaj, Missy Elliot, and Jennifer Lopez. She will be the first South American artist to win the award. The four-time VMA winner is also nominated for Best Collaboration, Best Latin, and Artist of the Year.

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Shakira is also expected to perform at the VMAs this year, the last time she performed was in 2005.

Sean “Diddy” – Global Icon Award

Sean Diddy, also known as Puff Daddy or P. Diddy will be the third recipient of the Global Icon Award, acknowledging his success in the music industry. Diddy will also perform at the award show for the first time in nearly 20 years.

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The other artists that have received the award are the Foo Fighters and the Red Hot Chilli Peppers.

Top Nominees

Female artists dominate this year’s categories. For instance, the Artist of the Year award includes Taylor Swift, Beyoncé, Doja, Nicki Minaj, Shakira, and Karol G.

Women also swept the Video of the Year category with six out of seven nominations. Sam Smith and Petras’ video “Unholy” is also nominated, and represents the first openly non-binary and transgender solo Artist to have a number-one song on Billboard Hot 100. The female artists in the category include:

Taylor Swift – “Anti-Hero”
Sza – “Kill Bill”
Doja Cat – “Attention”
Miley Cyrus – “Flowers”
Nicki Minaj – “Super Freaky Girl”
Olivia Rodrigo – “Vampire”

Taylor Swift

Taylor Swift is in the lead with 11 nominations, including social categories.

Her “Anti-Hero” Music video has seven nominations. This year could potentially be her fourth time winning the Video of the Year category, setting a record for most awards for Video of the Year.

The 14-time VMA winner is also nominated for Artist of the Year, Song of the Year, Best Pop, Best Direction, Best Cinematography, Best Visual Effects, and Best Editing.


Sza holds eight MTV Music video nominations and is running second against Swift. Her song “Kill Bill” is nominated for Song of the Summer, Video of the Year, Best Song, Best R&B Video, Best Editing, Best Direction, and Best Art Direction.

Sza’s album SOS is also nominated for Best Album. The singer currently holds two VMA awards.

Following Taylor Swift and Sza are those with six nominations. These artists include BLACKPINK, Doja Cat, Miley Cyrus, Nicki Minaj, and Olivia Rodrigo. Other artists with five nominations include Sam Smith, Beyonce, Diddy, Drake, Ice Spice, Karol G, Metro Boomin, Shakira, TOMORROW X TOGETHER, and Kim Petras.



The award show will honor Hip Hop’s 50th anniversary with a performance from Lil Wayne. He will take the VMA stage after 15 years, performing his new single “Kat Food”. He is also nominated for the Best Hip Hop category.

Hip Hop fans can also expect to see performances from Metro Boomin, Future, A Boogie Wit da Hoodie, Swae Lee, and NAV.

Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion Debut

The iconic female rapper’s Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion will debut their single “Bongos,” released Friday, September 8th.

Both rappers have performed for the VMA pre-show, but this will be the first time these new-coming artists will perform for the main show.

Global Artists

The music scene in the United States is becoming more global, with almost half of the performers coming from outside the country. These performers include Latin artists like Shakira, Peso Pluma, and Karol G.

K-pop bands from South Korea, counting the Stray Kids and TOMORROW X TOGETHER are both premiering their new songs. The Stray Kids perform at the VMAs for the first time debuting their song “S-Class.” TOMORROW X TOGETHER will also perform the world premiere of their new song featuring Anitta, who is another international artist from Brazil.

Other global artists set to perform are Maneskin from Italy and NAV from Canada.

You can vote here for nominees for this year’s VMAs!

About the Author

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Hannah Shemtov

Hannah Rose is a senior at Emerson College where she studies broadcast journalism and psychology. She has executive produced multiple television news outlets at her school, and interns at AfterBuzz and the Heal Squad. Originally from Los Angeles, California, Hannah winds down with a good film or binge worthy TV show.