Anitta Brings Favela Funk Vibes to the 2023 MTV VMAs With ‘Used to Be’ & ‘Funk Rave’

Bem-vindos à Funk Generation. Anitta electrified the crowd at the Prudential Center in Newark, N.J., as she graced the stage at the 2023 MTV Video Music Awards on Tuesday (Sept. 12).


The trilingual powerhouse performer set the scene by showcasing a pair of songs off her latest release, the three-track Funk Generation: A Favela Love Story, a sweltering carioca funk collection.

Opening up with “Used to Be” surrounded by six dancers, the singer wore a vibrant sequined multi-patterned leotard and black shorts, matching with her dancers. The seven women proceded to sway in unison, with some slick perreo-style moves. Then the scene goes to street-style block party with a dozen more dancers amid neon-hued crates.

Anitta then brings it all back to her favela foundations, unleashing a no-holds-barred fête, performing banger “Funk Rave.” Bolstered by an arresting baile funk beat, the Portuguese-language cut sees the Brazilian singer in a playful phase as she teases with flirty verses.

“Being an international artist is not only about being famous wherever you go, because the world is so big,” Anitta told Billboard last year. “It’s about being able to impact culturally different areas at the same time.” 

Four of the artists featured in this year’s awards ceremony hail from Latin America, illustrating the global influence of Latin pop in recent years. Shakira and Karol G are from Colombia, trilingual force Anitta represents Brazil and Peso Pluma is from Mexico, showcasing the storied tradition of músia mexicana. 

The MTV Video Music Awards were telecast live and emceed by Nicki Minaj.

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