It's been 17 years since Alyson Stoner first danced for Missy Elliott, and on Monday night, she proved she can still work it

Products in this story are independently selected and featured editorially. If you make a purchase using these links we may earn commission.
Advertisement

It’s been 17 years since Alyson Stoner first danced for Missy Elliott, and on Monday night, she proved she can still work it!

The Disney Channel alum and singer, 26, took the stage at the MTV Video Music Awards and recreated some of the moves she first displayed at the age of 9, when she cameoed in Elliott’s 2002 video for her hit single “Work It.”

Her performance came during Elliott’s epic Video Vanguard Award showcase.

Stoner, dressed in an Adidas yellow tracksuit with the name “Alyson” spelled out across her shoulders, was in the center spotlight during the epic medley. She showed off some serious acrobatic, pop-and-lock breakdancing moves while Elliott’s hit played in the background.

She said on Twitter, Tuesday, that Elliott’s choreographer Nadine “Hi-Hat” Ruffin had reached just a day before the gig and asked her to “jump in.”

“[Ruffin] said ‘do your thing’ and then it was showtime,” Stoner wrote. “Those grooves don’t leave your system.”

Alyson Stoner
Alyson Stoner then and now
| Credit: Missy Elliott/YouTube; Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic

Elliot, it appears, was happy with what Stoner came up with. “It’s been 17 years since we did “Work It” and over the years people always ask me where is that lil girl from your video,’ ” the rapper tweeted on Wednesday. “So I couldn’t of done this VMA performance without you there. Love you! Thank you so much.”

“Love you,” Stoner wrote in response. “Forever grateful. Thankful for your warmth, diligence, spirit. It’s the greatest honor to celebrate you with the world. Still geekin!!!”

Prior to the performance, Stoner — who also had a memorable role in Elliott’s “Gossip Folks” video in 2002, as well as her video for “I’m Really Hot” in 2006 — walked the red carpet at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey, in a cream mini dress with billowing sleeve details and a plunging neckline.

Alyson Stoner
Alyson Stoner
| Credit: Kevin Mazur/WireImage

Though it’s been years since she’s danced with Elliott, Stoner hasn’t left music videos behind.

These days, Stoner is starring in her own, though — releasing music independently over the past few years, including the video for her single “Stripped Bare” which she dropped in February.

That clip featured Stoner opening up about some of the struggles she dealt with as a child star.

The actress — who, after “Work It,” nabbed roles in films like Cheaper by the Dozen and Step Up, as well as more than a dozen series and projects for Disney Channel, including Camp Rock, The Suite Life of Zack & Cody and Phineas and Ferb — told PEOPLE back in February that the pressures to be perfect since childhood eventually led her to battles with anorexia nervosa, exercise bulimia and binge-eating disorder.

In the “Stripped Bare” music video, she showed she was ready to leave, all that behind, marking the beginning of a new chapter by shaving her head.

Shaving my head is an act of mental health and confidence, not self-destruction,” she told PEOPLE. “I can’t tell you how many beliefs and opinions and insecurities fell to the floor with every tuft of hair, and I’m leaving them there. I’m shedding one era and rising as a new being in real time.”

It appears Elliott has been supportive. Just last July, the rapper, 38, had praised Stoner on Twitter. “Alyson I knew you were special from the moment you were in my ‘Work It’ video, breakdancing,” Elliott wrote. “Keep doing ya thang!”

Alyson Stoner
Alyson Stoner
| Credit: Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic

Meanwhile, aside from Stoner and “Work It,” Elliott’s VMA performance medley also included some of her biggest hits over the years, including “Past That Dutch,” Work It” and “Lose Control.”

The 5’2″ emcee and hip-hop pioneer — known by her Missy “Misdemeanor” Elliott nickname — is the only female rapper to have six studio albums certified platinum, including her debut 1997 album Supa Dupa Fly and her 2002 LP Under Construction.

Elliott has topped the charts as a lead artist on a number of hit songs, including “Get Ur Freak On,” “WTF (Where They From),” “The Rain,” “4 My People,” and “One Minute Man.” She’s also been a songwriter and producer for other artists, guested on a handful of major hits like Ciara’s “1, 2 Step” and the 2001 “Lady Marmalade” with Mya, Pink, Lil’ Kim and Christina Aguilera.