08/25/2013 09:08 pm ET Updated Aug 26, 2013

Lady Gaga's VMA Performance Of 'Applause' Offers Wigs On Wigs On Wigs

Lady Gaga made a grand return to the MTV Video Music Awards stage on Sunday when she opened the show by performing her new single "Applause."

Gaga's performance started with her face filling the entirety of the screen while wearing a blockhead. What followed was the performance of the many wigs. She shed the first headpiece for a lopsided white wig, followed by a yellow postiche and then a long blonde mane.

When we last saw Gaga take the VMA stage, in 2011, she donned alter-ego Jo Calderone while performing "You and I." The year before, the singer concluded her blood-spattered "Paparazzi" rendition by hanging from a noose.

Gaga's latest performance comes on the heels of a controversial Twitter campaign to encourage fans to purchase "Applause," which has seen a lukewarm response since leaking earlier this month. Her current chart rival, Katy Perry, who released her new song "Roar" the same week "Applause" debuted, also performed during Sunday's telecast.

Unlike most of the show's other performers, Gaga has been out of the spotlight for the past year and therefore did not receive any VMA nominations. She joins Kanye West, Robin Thicke and a reunited 'NSYNC as some of the evening's headliners.

Live updates from the show are available below.

Video Music Awards 2013

08/25/2013 11:26 PM EDT

That's It For The VMAs

The 2013 MTV VMAs were something else. Thanks for joining!

08/25/2013 11:26 PM EDT

No, Boo!

08/25/2013 11:20 PM EDT

Here's Her Roar

Katy Perry performed "Roar" for the first time, and it was glorious.

08/25/2013 11:18 PM EDT

The Video Of The Year Winner Is ...

Justin Timberlake's "Mirrors."

08/25/2013 11:15 PM EDT

Joseph Gordon-Levitt Announces The MTV VMA For Video Of The Year

With a silly voice.

08/25/2013 11:12 PM EDT

In Case You Blinked During The VMAs

08/25/2013 11:08 PM EDT

So True

08/25/2013 11:07 PM EDT


08/25/2013 11:07 PM EDT

Because This Bruno Mars Performance Is Boring

Let's remember this:

08/25/2013 11:00 PM EDT

Lena Dunham Checks In