Britney Spears Rihanna Share Stage With “S&M Remix”

What in the name of burlesque? Britney Spears and Rihanna kicked off the 2011 Billboard Music Awards with an NC-17-rated performance of their pop collab, “S&M Remix,” live from Las Vegas on Sunday night.

There were plenty of feathers flying and ample pole-dancing (We almost thought we’d been hydroplaned to the middle of a Miley Cyrus concert…_) as the pop divas shared the stage for the first Billboard prizegiving since the show last aired on ABC back in 2006.

The Billboard Music Awards — an institution since 1989 — are given out annual to music’s most popular artists. The finalists and winners are determined by their rank on the Billboard charts and their “social and streaming activity.” Speaking of Rihanna, the island beauty joined crooner Bruno Mars and Grammy-winning rapper Eminem as one of the night’s top competitors. Beyonce received the coveted Artist of the Millenium” prize.