NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Brooklyn was on the world stage Sunday night – perhaps like never before – with Barclays Center hosting the MTV Video Music Awards.
As CBS 2’s Dave Carlin reported, the red carpet was out for the biggest stars in music as crowds gathered outside the stadium. Barclays Center itself was fixed up with plenty of extra razzle-dazzle.
This is the 30th year for the awards show, which delivers outrageous fashions and bizarre antics, and usually makes headlines.
Before the ceremony began, some residents were worried that an event so big, with so much extra security for so many VMA VIPs, the result will be chaos and delays that Brooklyn can do without.
“You can’t even cross the street — you know, to go onto Flatbush Avenue — which I think is wrong. It’s not even until tonight,” resident Victor Thomas said before the event. “They’re treating the neighbors like we’re second-class citizens or something, and I don’t think it’s right.”
Some spectators outside the stadium were not happy either. As 1010 WINS’ Gary Baumgarten reported, crowds gathered at the police barricades for several hours, only to be directed to move back by officers on the scene.
“We’ve been over here standing about an hour or two back here, and then they tell us to move,” a woman said. She said police told the crowd they would be let in after the awards ceremony started, but nobody let them in.
But others said they understand the need for public safety, and they are just happy to be in the crowd and part of the excitement. They also said they were proud such a huge event was being held in Brooklyn.
“We should be happy that they are finally making Brooklyn known,” said Sade Richards. “because out of all the places in the world, it really isn’t known like that.”
And for the thousands of people who did make it to the sidelines on the red carpet along Dean Street, the experience was a game-changer as they watched Lady Gaga, Katy Perry and other superstars.
“I’m going to go to bed and be like, ‘What just happened tonight?’” one spectator said.
“This is the best thing that ever happened,” another said.
“Brooklyn — we are on the map,” said Al Tejada of Bushwick.
“Look at all these people out here,” added Brittany DeRasmo of Park Slope. “I’ve never seen this many people here.”
Brooklyn is known for music, Carlin pointed out. Superstars from Jay-Z and Norah Jones to Neil Diamond and Neil Sedaka all hail from the borough, and so many more. Many people said that made Brooklyn a perfect fit for the awards ceremony, and look forward to seeing the big event return.
“It’s people coming here; knowing what a great borough we are; bringing money bringing attention,” said Liz Cooper of Park Slope.
Long-Rumored ‘N Sync Reunion Wows Crowd Inside
Inside the stadium, Justin Timberlake stole the show, wrestling the spotlight away from a rehabilitated Lady Gaga, an X-rated Miley Cyrus and a vengeful Taylor Swift with a medley of hits and the long-rumored reunion with former boy band mates `N Sync.
Timberlake also took home the video of the year trophy, winning the top honor for “Mirrors.”
Dressed in a black suit and black hat with a red feather, Timberlake powered through a breathless series of solo hits before the other four members of `N Sync — JC Chasez, Chris Kirkpatrick, Joey Fatone, and Lance Bass — joined him on stage, opening with “Bye Bye Bye.”
“Half of the moonmen I’ve ever won, I won with those four guys right there,” Timberlake said pointing at his former band mates while holding the Vanguard trophy. “So above all else, I’m going to share this _ we can keep it my house _ but I’m going to share this award with them.”
Up till Timberlake’s appearance, the ladies of pop music dominated as Cyrus became the rare artist to upstage Lady Gaga. But Swift managed to take the spotlight from both after appearing to utter an expletive when One Direction and rumored former love interest Harry Styles appeared at Sunday night’s award show _ a moment that lit up Twitter and was memorialized immediately in a GIF online.
She also thanked a former beau for helping her win another moonman trophy for “I Knew You Were Trouble” in the best female video category.
“I also want to thank the person who inspired this song, who knows exactly who he is, because I got one of these,” Swift said. “Thank you so much!”
Gaga changed costumes four times during her first return to the stage since hip surgery as she performed her new single “Applause” at the top of the show. It was a predictably unpredictable appearance for Gaga, who seemed to pump in boos over the over the sound system as she opened the song in a white nun’s habit and square headdress.
By the time she finished the song, she was surrounded by unitard-clad male dancers and wearing a thong bikini decorated in shells and a long blonde wig.
Cyrus immediately kicked things up well beyond provocative, however, as she appeared on stage with a multitude of dancing teddy bears in a bodysuit adorned with a cartoon character. She twerked to her song “We Can’t Stop,” changed into a nude bikini, ran a fan’s foam finger along her privates as Robin Thicke appeared on stage to perform “Blurred Lines,” then gave the singer a lap dance.
“Miley better go get a pregnancy test after all that grinding,” comedian Kevin Hart joked afterward.
Kanye West continued his stark portrayal of new music from his album “Yeezus,” performing “Blood on the Leaves” with its controversial Nina Simone “Strange Fruit” sample in silhouette in front of a black and white picture of a tree.
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis were the night’s top winners, taking home best hip-hop video for “Can’t Hold Us” and best video with a social message for “Same Love,” a marriage equality anthem.
“Gay rights are human rights,” Macklemore said during the telecast. “There is no separation.”
Other winners included One Direction, Bruno Mars, Selena Gomez and Thirty Seconds to Mars.
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(TM and © Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2013 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)