While the 2021 Video Music Awards was most definitely a star-studded affair, some celebs were notably missing from the crowd.

Miley Cyrus, for one, is always known to turn heads on the VMAs red carpet and with some sort of epic performance (let us never forget the 2013 show), but this year, she decided to skip the ceremony. In fact, the Hannah Montana alum even told fans she wouldn’t be attending in an Instagram post.

“V M SLAY,” she captioned a social media post. The photo was a meme of Miley sitting in a bathtub typing on her phone. The text on the photo read, “Me when my fans ask where I am on VMAs night.”

In a second slide, Miley showed her followers exactly what she was doing instead of being in Brooklyn, New York. The “Malibu” songstress shared a video of her “eating fried chicken in runway Saint Laurent.” Lastly, the singer promoted her new song, “Nothing Else Matters” in a third and final slide.

Similarly, Ariana Grande decided to forgo the awards show despite being nominated for Best Choreography, Best Pop Video and Artist of the Year. Instead of attending the awards show, the musician has been busy promoting her upcoming cosmetics line, R.E.M. Beauty.

“Coveting the secret for the past two years and having testers and samplers in my purse, and people asking me, ‘Oh, I love your highlight, what are you wearing?’ And me being like, ‘I don’t know’, sweating,’” Ariana told Allure in September 2021 was the hardest part of keeping her beauty line under wraps. “It was so hard to keep a secret for this long.”

While there’s no release date just yet, perhaps Ariana wanted to continue the mystery behind her upcoming project by not showing up at the VMAs. That, or she wanted some quiet time at home with her new husband, Dalton Gomez.

Ariana did make an appearance at the socially distant 2020 VMAs alongside Lady Gaga, with whom she performed their duet “Rain on Me.” That being said, both pop stars were missing at this year’s show. And they weren’t the only ones.

Taylor Swift, who was also nominated for a few awards, decided to skip out on the ceremony. So did her BFF Selena Gomez, who decided to post new TikTok videos instead! Lorde, Addison Rae and Kylie Jenner also missed out on the 2021 VMAs. Scroll through our gallery to find out why. 

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