MADRID — Without a doubt, the biggest shock of the 2010 MTV Europe Music Awards was Kanye West's surprise performance with 30 Seconds to Mars at the iconic Puerta de Alcala. But if you think you were surprised, well, then you should have seen how the guys in 30STM reacted when 'Ye showed up.
"This wasn't even last-minute, more like last-second," frontman Jared Leto told MTV News backstage at the EMAs. "Literally a day and a half ago, he was in New York and he got on, literally, the last flight, he made it out here. It's really a testament to him. ... I mean, Kanye West flew halfway across the world to be on the stage with 30 Seconds to Mars for a short period of time."
And, in keeping with the whole last-minute vibe, West and 30STM decided just moments before stepping onstage that they wanted to change their performance up. Originally, they were set to just perform the version of "Hurricane" that appears on 30 Seconds' upcoming reissue of This Is War, but then they decided to include a snippet of Yeezy's "Power" as well.
"We were backstage and, literally, right before we went on -- maybe five minutes -- we were making changes, and Kanye said, 'Well, maybe we'll play a piece of "Power" in the middle of the song,' and we were like, 'OK, let's go for it,' " Leto smiled. "It was thrown together last-minute, and rather than try to make something perfect, which is a silly thing, we really just embraced it as much more of a punk affair. We were all laughing with each other beforehand, because we knew it was going to be imperfect and a bit of a beautiful disaster, we hoped, and that was fine with us. It was more about the doing and sharing it together and really celebrating each other and the work we do."
And as amazed as the audience at the Puerta de Alcala was to see West stride onto the stage, well, they weren't nearly half as amazed as Leto and company were. After all, it was sort of a dream come true. For everyone involved.
"I think I had more fun than anyone," Leto laughed. "I was dancing around like a total f---ing freak when 'Power' came on."
The 2010 EMAs will air on Friday, November 12, at 9 p.m. ET on MTV.