Recreating the sultry vibe and catchy, bold choreography that made the music video for "Motivation" so popular, Normani made her solo debut in a purple version of her '90s-inspired ensemble from the video, and kicked things off with her twerking on a basketball court. Soon, she had a layer of clothes ripped off and danced on the floor to the sound of a rainstorm -- another scene taken straight from the video.
ET's Keltie Knight spoke with Normani backstage after the show, and the artist opened up about the amount of preparation and hard work that went into her epic performance.
"Oh my goodness, people don’t have any idea!" she explained. "It’s three minutes I’m up there on stage, but they don’t have the slightest idea of the hard work, blood, sweat, tears -- I literally have bruises on my knees [from] however many times I did that split."
This singer also admitted that it "really does take a village," and gave a special, appreciative shout-out to her choreographer, Sean Bankhead.
"[He] is incredible. He pushes me to the fullest of my capacity," she shared. "I swear that man thinks I can do anything and everything. I’m like, 'You really think that?' And he’s like, 'Because you can!'"
She also thanked her dancers, explaining, "They kept me energized on the stage. Kept me confident."
Normani actually watched her performance for the first time with ET backstage, and reflected on one unexpected moment during the costume change when one of the dancers was supposed to smoothly rip off one layer of clothing, but it got stuck and took longer than expected.
While it didn't mess up the flow of the number, she said it still threw her for a second even after moving on, but decided to just let it go.
"I was honestly still freaked out about the fact that the situation wasn't working but I was like, 'Go for it,'" she recalled. "Aye! I'm so happy [how it turned out]!"
As for taking home her first ever VMA award as a solo artist, the 23-year-old singer said it's "honestly a dream come true."
"I’ve worked incredibly hard seven, eight long years in [preparation for] this moment and it’s just really beautiful because it’s also the beginning," she shared. "So, I’m just really, really grateful for the opportunity."
"I feel like the VMAs is unlike any other show," she added. "This is where the biggest moments in pop culture happen and the fact that I got to be a part of that tonight is really crazy."