Lorde Pulls out of Planned VMAs 2021 Performance

Lorde will no longer perform at the VMAs on Sunday, Sept. 12. The New Zealand musician, who released her third studio album, Solar Power, in August, was slated to take the stage this weekend for the annual ceremony. However, the official VMAs account recently announced in a tweet that "due to a change in production elements, Lorde can no longer perform at this year's show." The statement added, "we love Lorde and cannot wait for her to perform on the VMA stage in the future!"

At this year's show, Lorde's video for the title track of her new album, Solar Power, is nominated for Best Cinematography. The "Mood Ringer" singer's now-canceled performance would have marked her first on the VMA stage since she last appeared at the ceremony back in 2017. During that years' VMAs, Lorde performed her song "Homemade Dynamite," though she did not sing, as she later explained that she had "the flu so bad i needed an IV." In a newsletter on Thursday, the singer assured her fans that her decision to bow out of her scheduled performance was not due to health issues.

"I saw some people were very concerned about me pulling out of the VMAs, you're so sweet, I'm totally fine!" Lorde wrote. "It's just that we were planning this insanely amazing many-bodied intimate dance performance, not fully understanding the (very necessary!) safety protocols that are in place, and the masking and distancing just meant it wasn't gonna be what I dreamed, and you know I can't make something less than outstanding for you guys."

Although Lorde will no longer take the stage at this weekend's ceremony, a long list of other musicians are slated to show off their vocals when the MTV VMA awards returns with an in-person audience after going without one in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic. Among the confirmed performances are Foo Fighters, Shawn Mendes, Twenty One Pilots, Chloe, Lil Nas X, Olivia Rodrigo, Machine Gun Kelly, and Camila Cabello. Doja Cat, meanwhile, will pull double duty, as she will take the stage for both a performance as well as host of the night.


The 2021 MTV Video Music Awards will air live from New York City on Sunday, Sept. 12 at 8 p.m. EST on MTV. Up for the highest honor of the night, Artist of the Year, are Ariana Grande, Doja Cat, Justin Bieber, Megan Thee Stallion, Olivia Rodrigo, and Taylor Swift. Meanwhile, Bieber leads all nominees this year with a total of seven.