Taylor Swift, her choreographer Todrick Hall, and the drag stars of TSwift’s drag and influencer-studded video homage to the LGBTQ community kicked off Monday night’s MTV VMAs with a 4-D rainbow explosion of Too Much with “You Need to Calm Down,” before slipping on a blazer (the international sign of taking things down a notch) for a much lower-key, one-woman-with-a-guitar rendition of her ballad “Lover.”
Taylor later won the evening’s Video for Good award for “You Need to Calm Down” and stepped aside to let Todrick give a pride-filled acceptance speech. “If you are a young child watching this show who is different, who feels misunderstood, we have never needed you more than now to share your art, share your stories, share your truth with the world no matter what you identify as, who you love,” he told the cheering crowd. “This is such a beautiful place. Thank you so much, VMAs.”
“In this video, several points were made, so you voting for this video means that you want a world where we’re all treated equally under the law, regardless of who we love, regardless of how we identify,” the singer said when accepting this year’s Video of the Year award. She pointed to the massive fan response to the video’s petition calling for Senate support of the Equality Act, gesturing to her wrist that it’s about time the Act was passed. “My cast lives their lives so authentically. Thank you for being the example that you are. I love you guys so much.”
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