Wearing a crown and a white bodice, Rihanna sat on a pedestal surrounded by pulsing red light and daisies, and steadily and almost quietly began to sing "Only Girl (In the World)," off her forthcoming album Loud. When the chorus kicked in, she turned up the volume. When Rihanna stepped down off her pedestal, viewers discovered that Rihanna's bodice came complete with a skirt made of flowers. The daisies were soon gone and she was surrounded by men dressed in business suits, looking very much like characters out of "Mad Men."
Clearly, she wanted to feel like the only girl in the world (surrounded by eligible gentlemen). The dancers opened their briefcases to light up the stage and throw confetti, and as the song closed, Rihanna was the only one left onstage.
"The EMAs are fun!" Rihanna told MTV News last month. "I performed 'SOS' a few years ago, and I just remember how exciting it was to be there and have all these different artists from all over the world and Europe come together."
For those who aren't familiar with the European music scene, Rihanna said the EMA show is a great way to learn all about it. "In America, you have a better sense of all the music that's happening right now," she explained. "And every time I go to Europe, and especially go to an awards show in Europe, you just see all these different acts, all these different artists you probably never even heard of, all these incredible songs that you would have never known about unless you travel there. It's just exciting to see the diversity in the culture of music between America and Europe. It's really cool."
The 2010 EMA show airs on MTV2 on Sunday (November 7) at 9 p.m. ET, and an edited, performance-heavy version will be broadcast Friday at 9 p.m. ET on MTV.