The 2010 American Music Awards featured a number of excellent, theatrical performances from some of the biggest names in music. Beginning with Rihanna (who opened the show with an intense read on the hit “What’s My Name?” and the soon-to-be-massive “Love the Way You Lie (Part II)”), each subsequent performer kicked the evening up a notch in his or her own particular way. Justin Bieber filled the stage with a massive choir for the overwhelming wave that was “Pray,” while the Black Eyed Peas pulled out another futuristic rave-up. Some performers went in the other direction, as Kid Rock shed his big rock sound for a simple acoustic tune and Taylor Swift settled for little more than a piano and some snowing-on-stage effects for her take on “Back to December.” Ke$ha, Miley Cyrus, Pink, Katy Perry and others all impressed as well, turning in intense performances, with the only real dud of the night being the collaboration between Santana and Bush frontman Gavin Rossdale, which never seemed to come together (it didn’t help that they were covering a beloved T. Rex song).
If we are to go solely by audience reaction, then the best performance of the night belonged to the combined powers of New Kids on the Block and the Backstreet Boys (henceforth known as NKOTBSB). The nine-headed behemoth took the stage at the end of the night and blew through a mash-up of some of their biggest hits. They were in fine voice and still moved extremely well, and it set the tone for their hotly-anticipated tour next spring.
So we’ll leave you with this question: Who had the best performance at the 2010 American Music Awards? Vote in the poll below and sound off in the comments!