Ariana Grande offered a pre-recorded performance of her Thank U, Next highlight “Needy” at the 2019 iHeartRadio Music Awards on Thursday night (Mar. 14).
Backed by a string quartet and a keyboard player, Grande sang a typically pitch-perfect version of the echoing, eerie ballad, which Sweetener collaborator Pharrell introduced as being her “next big hit” off the album. The pop star did not appear live at the awards, as she was mentioned as being busy preparing for her Sweetener World Tour.
The performance came after Pharrell introduced Grande as the iHeartRadio artist of the year, commenting of her 2018 accomplishments: “Now, who else could pull off a run like that?” Grande also accepted her performance in an abbreviated acceptance video. “I am so honored,” she said. “I will sleep with this [trophy] tonight.”
thank u @iheartradio for having us on the show. we’re so honored and excited for u to hear what we did and to be there in spirit (just know that while you’re enjoying our televised performance i’ll be running around like a fucking maniac during our final dress rehearsals)… tune in march 14 — love u