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BRIT Awards 2021: Dua Lipa calls for key workers’ pay increase as Little Mix win best British Group

The 2021 BRIT Awards marked the long-awaited return of live music on Tuesday night as Dua Lipa paid a moving tribute to the young hero Folajimi Olubunmi-Adewole, as she accepted the top prize for Best Album.

The Physical hitmaker, who also scooped the award for British Female Solo Artist, dedicated her award to the rescuer known as Jimi, calling for him to be honoured with a Bravery Award after he tragically lost his life while attemping to save a woman who jumped into the River Thames from London Bridge. 

Visibly moved by her double honours, Dua also used her acceptance speeches to demand that the audience give Prime Minister Boris Johnson ‘a message’ that frontline staff deserved a pay rise before dedicating her prize to the nurse Dame Elizabeth Anionwu.

The BRIT Awards marked the return of live music to the UK for the first time since the beginning of the Covid pandemic as this year’s nominees took to the stage in front of a limited audience of key workers at London’s O2 Arena. 

Emotional: The 2021 BRIT Awards marked the long-awaited return of live music on Tuesday night as Dua Lipa paid a moving tribute to the young hero Folajimi Olubunmi-Adewole, as she accepted the top prize for Best Album 

In what was her second win of the night, Dua was stunned to accept the award for Best Album for Future Nostalgia, and dedicated her second award to young Jimi who died last month.

She said :’I want to honour this award also to Folajimi Olubunmi-Adewole, or Jimi as he’s known by his friends and family, and Joaquin Garcia. Jimi and Joaquin heroically attempted to rescue a woman who’d fallen from London Bridge, and tragically Jimi did not survive.

‘Jimi and Joaquin knowingly put themselves in danger, and they did it without hesitation even though they were a stranger to each other and to the woman they were rescuing. It would be really fitting if their actions were recognised with a bravery award, and I hope this can happen to give Jimi’s family some comfort.

‘This award is for Jimi and Joaquin. Jimi, you have touched the hearts of a whole nation and we will never forget you.’ 

Dua certainly proved to be the star of the evening as she took to the stage to kick off the ceremony with a medley of her hits, which began as she made her way to the O2 on the Underground at Charing Cross station. 

The hitmaker delivered a medley of her hits Physical, Pretty Please, Hallucinate and Don’t Start Now in a Union Jack inspired ensemble, after channelling Amy Winehouse with her eye-catching look on the red carpet.

Touching: The Physical hitmaker, who also scooped the award for British Female Solo Artist, dedicated her award to the rescuer known as Jimi, calling for him to be honoured with a Bravery Award

Touching: The Physical hitmaker, who also scooped the award for British Female Solo Artist, dedicated her award to the rescuer known as Jimi, calling for him to be honoured with a Bravery Award

What a moment! In what was her second win of the night, Dua was stunned to accept the award for Best Album for Future Nostalgia

For him! She dedicated her award to young Jimi who died last month

What a moment! In what was her second win of the night, Dua was stunned to accept the award for Best Album for Future Nostalgia, and dedicated her award to young Jimi who died last month.

It was a night to remember for Dua as she also took to the stage to accept the award for Female Solo Artist, and used the opportunity to share the prize with nurse Dame Elizabeth Anionwu.

She said: ‘This is sick, wow thank you so much, it’s such an honour to be here it’s such an honour to be back on this stage, last time when I was up accepting this award in 2018 I wanted to see more women on these stages, and I’m so proud three years later to be part of this wave of women in music. 

‘To my family and friends for all their support I’m so grateful and I feel so so licky, I think this is such an incredible invite to give another part of your award to someone and I’ve chosen my favourite British female is Dame Elizabeth Anionwu

‘She has spent her stellar nursing career fighting racial injustice she has spent so much time and is a strong advocate for protecting frontline workers, thank you. 

‘She has also sad that there is a massive disparity between love and respect for frontline workers, because we need to clap them but we need to pay them, so I think what we should do is give a massive round of applause and give Boris a message that we all support a pay rise for our frontline!’

Stellar: The hitmaker scooped the award for British Female Solo Artist at the ceremony on Tuesday,

Amazing: Dua demanded that the audience give Prime Minister Boris Johnson 'a message' that frontline staff deserved a pay rise

Stellar: After scooping the award for British Female Solo Artist, the Physical hitmaker demanded that the audience give Prime Minister Boris Johnson ‘a message’ that frontline staff deserved a pay rise

Important: It was a night to remember for Dua as she also took to the stage to accept the award for Female Solo Artist, and used the opportunity to share the prize with nurse Dame Elizabeth Anionwu

Important: It was a night to remember for Dua as she also took to the stage to accept the award for Female Solo Artist, and used the opportunity to share the prize with nurse Dame Elizabeth Anionwu

Do it! She said: 'I think what we should do is give a massive round of applause and give Boris a message that we all support a pay rise for our frontline!'

Do it! She said: ‘I think what we should do is give a massive round of applause and give Boris a message that we all support a pay rise for our frontline!’

Here she is! Taylor Swift also made history at the end of the evening as she accepted the Global Icon Award, the first time in history a female artist had been presented with the honour

Here she is! Taylor Swift also made history at the end of the evening as she accepted the Global Icon Award, the first time in history a female artist had been presented with the honour

BRIT AWARD WINNERS 2021

FEMALE SOLO ARTIST 

ARLO PARKS

CELESTE 

DUA LIPA – WINNER

JESSIE WARE 

 LIANNE LA HAVAS

MALE SOLO ARTIST 

AJ TRACEY

HEADIE ONE 

J HUS – WINNER

JOEL CORRY 

YUNGBLUD

BRITISH GROUP 

BICEP

BIFFY CLYRO 

LITTLE MIX – WINNER

THE 1975 

YOUNG T & BUGSEY

BRITs RISING STAR 

GRIFF WARNER – WINNER

PA SALIEU

RINA SAWAYAMA 

MASTERCARD ALBUM 

ARLO PARKS COLLAPSED IN SUNBEAMS 

CELESTE NOT YOUR MUSE 

DUA LIPA FUTURE NOSTALGIA – WINNER

J HUS BIG CONSPIRACY

JESSIE WARE WHAT’S YOUR PLEASURE? 

INTERNATIONAL GROUP

BTS 

D.C. PARTISAN 

FOO FIGHTERS 

HAIM – WINNER

RUN THE JEWELS

RISING STAR

Griff

BREAKTHROUGH ARTIST 

ARLO PARKS – WINNER

BICEP 

CELESTE 

JOEL CORRY 

YOUNG T & BUGSEY

BRITISH SINGLE

220 KID & GRACEY DON’T NEED LOVE

AITCH & AJ TRACEY FT TAY KEITH RAIN 

DUA LIPA PHYSICAL

HARRY STYLES WATERMELON SUGAR – WINNER 

HEADIE ONE FT AJ TRACEY & STORMZY AIN’T IT DIFFERENT 

JOEL CORRY FT MNEK HEAD & HEART

NATHAN DAWE FT KSI LIGHTER

REGARD & RAYE SECRETS 

S1MBA FT DTG ROVER PARLOPHONE 

YOUNG T & BUGSEY FT HEADIE ONE DON’T RUSH

INTERNATIONAL FEMALE SOLO ARTIST 

ARIANA GRANDE

BILLIE EILISH – WINNER

CARDI B

MILEY CYRUS 

TAYLOR SWIFT 

INTERNATIONAL MALE SOLO ARTIST 

BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN  

BURNA BOY 

CHILDISH GAMBINO 

TAME IMPALA FICTION

THE WEEKND – WINNER

GLOBAL ICON

Taylor Swift  

 

Taylor Swift also made history at the end of the evening as she accepted the Global Icon Award, the first time in history a female artist had been presented with the honour.

The Fearless singer was praised by many of her fellow stars, including longtime friends Selana Gomez, Ed Sheeran and music legend Annie Lennox for her incredible collection of music.

She said: ‘That video, anyone who was in that video, Selena, Zoe, Ed, Griff and my soul left my body when Annie Lennox appeared. I’m really prould to be part of this musical community, but what we really needed was the help and support of the NHS thank you for everything you’d done for us.

Touched: The Fearless singer was praised by many of her fellow stars, including longtime friends Selana Gomez, Ed Sheeran and music legend Annie Lennox for her incredible collection of music

Touched: The Fearless singer was praised by many of her fellow stars, including longtime friends Selana Gomez, Ed Sheeran and music legend Annie Lennox for her incredible collection of music

Amazing: She said: 'We live in a world where anyone has the right to say anything they want about you at any time, but please remember that you have the right to prove them wrong'

Amazing: She said: ‘We live in a world where anyone has the right to say anything they want about you at any time, but please remember that you have the right to prove them wrong’

Eye-catching: Taylor dazzled in a beautiful silver beaded crop top and matching skirt as she took to the stage

Jaw-dropping: She took to the stage to accept her honour, after being praised by her fellow music stars

Eye-catching: Taylor dazzled in a beautiful silver beaded crop top and matching skirt as she took to the stage to accept her honour, after being praised by her fellow music stars

At last! The ceremony, which took place at London’s O2 Arena with a limited audience as part of the government’s Covid pilot scheme, also saw Little Mix make history as the first ever girl band to win Best British Group

‘I am so indebted and grateful to my British fans, I love you so much for everything you’d done for me, we’ve had so many amazing memories in the last 15 years, from playing Shepherd’s Bush Empire, to Wembley Stadium, to the O2 Arena, and because of you last year I almost played Glastonbury!

Noting the Covid pandemic, which brought much of the world to a halt, Taylor continued: ‘We all know what happened next, the world changed, and I ended up putting out three albums instead. Making Folklore and Evermore was the most unique experience I’ve ever had.

‘I want to thank my friends and family who know exactly who they are. If there’s one thing I’ve learned is you have to look around everyday. Never take them for granted, there are so many incredible new artists in this room tonight, and so many people watching who ahve goals and dreams and ambisiton for themselves. 

‘We live in a world where anyone has the right to say anything they want about you at any time, but please remember that you have the right to prove them wrong, I love you so much thank you so much for this beautiful honour, this is amazing.’

Taylor also offered thanks to her longtime boyfriend Joe Alwyn, having spent much of the Covid lockdown living with the actor in the UK.

Over the moon! Just days after announcing their pregnancies, Leigh-Anne Pinnock and Perrie Edwards took to the stage with Jade Thirlwall

Happy: The trio paid tribute to their former bandmate Jesy Nelson while also vowing to 'stick together' after overcoming the 'misogynistic' music industry

Over the moon! Just days after announcing their pregnancies, Leigh-Anne Pinnock and Perrie Edwards took to the stage with Jade Thirlwall to accept the coveted prize, paying tribute to former bandmate Jesy Nelson

Elated: Leigh-Anne Pinnock (far left) said: 'We have been together for 10 years it's been the best years of our life, we've had so much fun we've made so many memories, we want to thank your incredible fans, Jesy'

Elated: Leigh-Anne Pinnock (far left) said: ‘We have been together for 10 years it’s been the best years of our life, we’ve had so much fun we’ve made so many memories, we want to thank your incredible fans, Jesy’

Glowing: The trio coordinated in glamorous white ball gowns, with the two mums-to-be cradling their stomachs as they posed for some snaps just days after announcing their pregnancies

Glowing: The trio coordinated in glamorous white ball gowns, with the two mums-to-be cradling their stomachs as they posed for some snaps just days after announcing their pregnancies

Thrilled: Jade added: 'This award isn't just for us, it's for Spice Girls, Sugababes, All Saints, Girls Aloud, all the incredible girls bands we love you'

Thrilled: Jade added: ‘This award isn’t just for us, it’s for Spice Girls, Sugababes, All Saints, Girls Aloud, all the incredible girls bands we love you’

Funny: Comedian Jack Whitehall was once again tasked with hosting the awards, and as ever he didn't disappoint with a slew of jibes and tongue-in-cheek jokes including a swipe at Rita Ora

Funny: Comedian Jack Whitehall was once again tasked with hosting the awards, and as ever he didn’t disappoint with a slew of jibes and tongue-in-cheek jokes including a swipe at Rita Ora

Naughty! Performing a sea shanty with The Wellerman creator Nathan Evans, Jack sang: 'It's a Party Fit for Rita Ora,' in reference to the star's London party back in November which breached Covid restrictions

Naughty! Performing a sea shanty with The Wellerman creator Nathan Evans, Jack sang: ‘It’s a Party Fit for Rita Ora,’ in reference to the star’s London party back in November which breached Covid restrictions

Back on stage! The ceremony broadcast live on ITV, celebrated the return to live music and nominee Dua Lipa promised those attending that it would 'be a night to remember' (Simon Neil of Biffy Clyro is pictured)

Back on stage! The ceremony broadcast live on ITV, celebrated the return to live music and nominee Dua Lipa promised those attending that it would ‘be a night to remember’ (Simon Neil of Biffy Clyro is pictured)

Huge news! Working closely with the Government to adhere to safety guidelines, this means The BRITs, was the first live music show at The O2 in over a year, with 4,000 tickets being up for grabs (Raye is pictured left)

Huge news! Working closely with the Government to adhere to safety guidelines, this means The BRITs, was the first live music show at The O2 in over a year, with 4,000 tickets being up for grabs (Raye is pictured left)

Cheers! The BRITs will play an important role in paving the way for the return of live music at scale as the UK emerges from the past year's restrictions (Joel Corry is pictured)

Cheers! The BRITs will play an important role in paving the way for the return of live music at scale as the UK emerges from the past year’s restrictions (Joel Corry is pictured)

It's back at last! Nominations were unveiled in March, with Celeste, Dua Lipa, Joel Corry and Young T & Bugsey joining Arlo Parks in receiving three nominations each, and Jessie Ware, J Hus, Bicep, AJ Tracey up for two awards as with Headie One

It’s back at last! Nominations were unveiled in March, with Celeste, Dua Lipa, Joel Corry and Young T & Bugsey joining Arlo Parks in receiving three nominations each, and Jessie Ware, J Hus, Bicep, AJ Tracey up for two awards as with Headie One

How are the BRIT Awards going ahead during the Covid pandemic? 

The 2021 BRIT Awards mark the first live music event in the UK since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The indoor ceremony and live show will form part of the Government’s scientific Events Research Programme.

Enhanced testing approaches will examine how events can take place without the need for social distancing after all restrictions are lifted on June 21.  

4,000 tickets were made available for the live ceremony, just one fifth of the venue’s 20,000 capacity, with 2,500 of those being given to key workers. 

The BRITs will play an important role in paving the way for the return of live music at scale as the UK emerges from the past year’s restrictions. 

Audience members will not be socially distanced or required to wear face coverings once seated inside the arena, though they will be required in communal areas such as the toilet or main concourse.

All attendees will be allowed to purchase alcohol and concessions once inside the O2 Arena.

Attendees will also be required to follow existing Government guidance when travelling to the venue and adhere to rules set out by the event organisers.

Among the rules, attendees must have proof of a negative lateral flow test result to enter the venue, and said test must be taken at an asymptomatic testing site within 36 hours of the ceremony.

Upon arrival at the venue, all attendess will be asked to take a PCR test, and will then take another test five days after the ceremony 

It’s hoped this will gather further evidence on the safety of indoor settings, reduced social distancing and the removal of non-pharmaceutical interventions like face coverings.

 

Elsewhere, after stunning in their elegant white ensembles, Little Mix took to the stage to accept their prize for Best British Group, with Leigh-Anne Pinnock beginning: ‘We have been together for 10 years it’s been the best years of our life, we’ve had so much fun we’ve made so many memories, we want to thank your incredible fans, Jesy.

‘It’s not easy being a female in the UK pop industry, we’ve seen the misogyny, dominance and lack of diversity, we’re proud of how we’re stuck together and we’re using our voices more than ever.’

Jade added: ‘This award isn’t just for us, it’s for Spice Girls, Sugababes, All Saints, Girls Aloud, all the incredible girls bands we love you.’  

Comedian Jack Whitehall was once again tasked with hosting the awards, and as ever he didn’t disappoint with a slew of jibes and tongue-in-cheek jokes. 

These included a cheeky reference to singer Rita and her London party which breached lockdown rules back in November during a sea shanty with The Wellerman creator Nathan Evans, by singing: ‘It’s a Party Fit for Rita Ora.’

But the night wasn’t without gaffes, as Jack was noticeably muted by show bosses after appeared to drop the first expletive of the evening, despite the scenes airing after the 9pm watershed.

The comic could later be heard shouting ‘s**t’ during an interview with International Group winner Haim, after he praised the trio for travelling to England specifically for the ceremony.  

Lewis Capaldi proved to be the viral sensation of the night, as he proceeded to drop multiple f-bombs as he presented the final award of the night, Best British Album.

He began: ”I’m f***ing s-‘ before being muted by ITV bosses, later continuing: ‘Sorry, I was reading off a card here – ”how is everyone doing?” 

At the end of his speech he added: ‘Some good s***’ sparking a hysterial reaction from fans who praised his hilarious appearance. 

Ahead of Coldplay’s opening performance, host Jack received a grilling from the Line Of Duty duo Vicky McClure and Martin Compston about who would be kicking off the ceremony.  

But despite channelling their AC-12 alter-agos, the funnyman failed to spill the beans, meaning the pair had to call in reinforcements – Handforth Parish Council’s Jackie Weaver.

Despite Jack’s insistence she ‘didn’t have the authority,’ Jackie furiously terminated their video chat, before beginning the live awards show. 

What did he say? Lewis Capaldi proved to be the viral sensation of the night, as he proceeded to drop multiple f-bombs as he presented the final award of the night, Best British Album

What did he say? Lewis Capaldi proved to be the viral sensation of the night, as he proceeded to drop multiple f-bombs as he presented the final award of the night, Best British Album

He said what? He began: ''I'm f***ing s-' before being muted by ITV bosses, later continuing: 'Sorry, I was reading off a card here - ''how is everyone doing?''

He said what? He began: ”I’m f***ing s-‘ before being muted by ITV bosses, later continuing: ‘Sorry, I was reading off a card here – ”how is everyone doing?”

Tell us! Ahead of Coldplay's opening performance, Jack received a grilling from the Line Of Duty duo Vicky McClure and Martin Compston about who would be kicking off the ceremony

Tell us! Ahead of Coldplay’s opening performance, Jack received a grilling from the Line Of Duty duo Vicky McClure and Martin Compston about who would be kicking off the ceremony

Showman! Coldplay then kicked off the show with an incredible pre-recorded performance on the River Thames

Showman! Coldplay then kicked off the show with an incredible pre-recorded performance on the River Thames

Showman! Coldplay then kicked off the show with an incredible pre-recorded performance on the River Thames of their single Higher Power from a barge in front of the O2

Incredible: Going all out for the opening act, Coldplay opted for futuristic dancing holograms and sparkling fireworks for the showcase, which was filmed outside the O2 last month

Incredible: Going all out for the opening act, Coldplay opted for futuristic dancing holograms and sparkling fireworks for the showcase, which was filmed outside the O2 last month

New release: Higher Power features on Coldplay's new album which is called Music Of The Spheres, another reference to space and life beyond Earth

New release: Higher Power features on Coldplay’s new album which is called Music Of The Spheres, another reference to space and life beyond Earth 

Coldplay then kicked off the show with an incredible pre-recorded performance on the River Thames of their single Higher Power from a barge in front of the O2.

Going on all out for the opening act, Coldplay opted for futuristic dancing holograms and sparkling fireworks for the showcase, which was filmed outside the O2 last month.

The performance included the use of jaw-dropping holograms, adding to the sci-fi theme after the band unveiled their new single last week by streaming it on board the Internation Space Station.  

Harry Styles also earned a thunderous reaction from his die-hard fans when he was awarded Best British Single for his hit Watermelon Sugar.

Looking good! The band's stellar showcase then moved into Dua's jaw-dropping performance, which began as she made her way to the O2 on the Underground at Charing Cross station before transitioning into the arena

Looking good! The band's stellar showcase then moved into Dua's jaw-dropping performance, which began as she made her way to the O2 on the Underground at Charing Cross station before transitioning into the arena

Looking good! The band’s stellar showcase then moved into Dua’s jaw-dropping performance, which began as she made her way to the O2 on the Underground at Charing Cross station before transitioning into the arena

Flag blazer: The 25-year-old singer hit the stage in a Union Jack blazer, which she soon shed as she got into her performance

Flag blazer: The 25-year-old singer hit the stage in a Union Jack blazer, which she soon shed as she got into her performance

Paying homage: Levitating hitmaker Dua's choice of ensemble hearkened back to Geri Horner's headline-making patriotic minidress

A trip down memory lane: Geri Horner wore the iconic minidress  as she performed at the same awards show some 24 years ago, back in 1997

Paying homage: Levitating hitmaker Dua’s choice of ensemble hearkened back to Geri Horner’s headline-making patriotic minidress, which she wore as she performed at the same awards show some 24 years ago, back in 1997 (left)

Over the moon: Up first was the award for British Breakthrough Artist, awarded to Arlo Parks, who gushed that 'dreams do come true' after thanking her loved ones for helping encourage her to reach the prestigious honour

Over the moon: Up first was the award for British Breakthrough Artist, awarded to Arlo Parks, who gushed that ‘dreams do come true’ after thanking her loved ones for helping encourage her to reach the prestigious honour

Eloquent: Arlo also took to the stage to perform a rendition of her single Hope in a bold paisley silver suit

Sensational: She scooped the first award of the night

Eloquent: Arlo also took to the stage to perform a rendition of her single Hope in a bold paisley silver suit after scooping the first award of the night

Big star! Harry Styles also earned a thunderous reaction from his die-hard fans when he was awarded Best British Single

Chart-topper: The former One Direction star has had huge success in his solo career, winning for his hit Watermelon Sugar

Big star! Harry Styles also earned a thunderous reaction from his die-hard fans when he was awarded Best British Single for his hit Watermelon Sugar

The former One Direction star, who is in the midst of filming the 1950s drama My Policeman, took to the stage in an eye-catching brown suit, avoiding a run-in with his ex-girlfriend Taylor at the awards.

He said: ‘Thank you so much, it’s I just continue to be baffled by moments like this that make me more and mre incredible gateful to be able to do this job every day.

‘I’m really happy and prud to be celebrating British music tonight, I want to thank my fans for being so generous to me always and everyone who has my back thank you so much.’

British Breakthrough Artist was awarded to Arlo Parks, who gushed that ‘dreams do come true’ after thanking her loved ones for helping encourage her to reach the prestigious honour. 

Over the moon: He said: 'I'm really happy and prud to be celebrating British music tonight, I want to thank my fans for being so generous to me always and everyone who has my back thank you so much'

Over the moon: He said: ‘I’m really happy and prud to be celebrating British music tonight, I want to thank my fans for being so generous to me always and everyone who has my back thank you so much’

We are the winners! International Group was given to Haim, who attended the ceremony in person after spending 10 days in quarantine to accept their award

We are the winners! International Group was given to Haim, who attended the ceremony in person after spending 10 days in quarantine to accept their award

Thanks! Male Solo Artist was given to J Hus, who was unable to attend to accept the award, with DJ Semtex taking to the stage in his place

Thanks! Male Solo Artist was given to J Hus, who was unable to attend to accept the award, with DJ Semtex taking to the stage in his place

Lady in red: Olivia Rodrigo was a vision in a beautiful red gown as she took to the stage

Jaw-dropping: She delivered a stunning performance of her chart-topping hit Drivers Licence

Lady in red: Olivia Rodrigo was a vision in a beautiful red gown as she delivered a stunning performance of her chart-topping hit Drivers Licence

Male Solo Artist was given to J Hus, who was unable to attend to accept the award, with DJ Semtex taking to the stage in his place.

He said: ‘Shout out to AJ Tracey, Headie One, all the artist in the building tonight. I’m gonna take my time and get this right, I don’t wanna end up as a meme tomorrow.

‘I’m here today because J Hus couldn’t make it, I’m here to accept the award on behalf of J Hus. He’s an incredible artist, one of the greatest. He makes music that makes our days that little bit easier, our lives that little bit easier.

‘If he was here tonight, I know he’d want to big up his family, he’d want to big up his friends and his team. All the fans who’ve been with him from day one, I know he’d want to big up militarians worldwide.

Breathtaking performance: : Griff captured the audience's attention as she put on a rousing performance of Black Hole

Purple reign: She looked sensational as she took to the stage in a purple gown

Breathtaking performance: : Griff captured the audience’s attention as she put on a rousing performance of Black Hole

Winning big: It proved to be a victorious night for Griff, who picked up the coveted Rising Star award after her performance

Winning big: It proved to be a victorious night for Griff, who picked up the coveted Rising Star award after her performance

Debut single: The Hertfordshire native, whose real name is Sarah Faith Griffiths, released her debut single Mirror Talk in 2019

Debut single: The Hertfordshire native, whose real name is Sarah Faith Griffiths, released her debut single Mirror Talk in 2019

‘If he was here tonight, he might say something like, ‘Heavy duty don’t hide the beauty’. If J Hus was here tonight, I know he would definitely say, ‘Are you stronger today than you were yesterday?’. So everybody, wherever you are right now, show some appreciation for J Hus!’ 

International Female Artist was presented to Billie Eilish, who lamented being unable to attend the occasion after her stellar performance of No Time To Die at last year’s ceremony.

She said: ‘I love you so much this is an honour, the BRITs were so magical for me last year, I can’t wait to come back, thank you.’ 

Griff captured the audience’s attention as she put on a rousing performance of Black Hole, in what proved to be proved to be a victorious night for the star as she picked up the coveted Rising Star award after her performance.

International Male Artist saw a surprise appearance from former First Lady Michelle Obama, who presented the prize to The Weeknd, just minutes after he appeared to take inspiration from the UK’s recent weather by performing in the pouring rain.

Performance: Also taking to the stage on the night were Elton John and Years & Years, who teamed up to perform the Pet Shop Boys classic It's A Sin, after teasing the surprise collaboration on social media ahead of the show

Performance: Also taking to the stage on the night were Elton John and Years & Years, who teamed up to perform the Pet Shop Boys classic It’s A Sin, after teasing the surprise collaboration on social media ahead of the show

Mutual fans: The Rocket Man hitmaker, 74, took to the stage with Years & Years frontman Olly Alexander, 30, after becoming a huge fan of Olly's performance as Ritchie Tozer in Channel 4 drama It's A Sin

Top of the crops: Olly was seen performing in a sparkling crop top

Mutual fans: The Rocket Man hitmaker, 74, took to the stage with Years & Years frontman Olly Alexander, 30, after becoming a huge fan of Olly’s performance as Ritchie Tozer in Channel 4 drama It’s A Sin

Spelling it out: The joint performance was heavily hinted at on social media, with Elton, Years and Years and The Brit Awards' Instagram accounts all sharing words that spell out 'It's A Sin'

Spelling it out: The joint performance was heavily hinted at on social media, with Elton, Years and Years and The Brit Awards’ Instagram accounts all sharing words that spell out ‘It’s A Sin’

Title: Their cover of It's A Sin was a fitting choice, as, it shares its name with the critically acclaimed series which starred Olly

Writhe: The musician and actor writhed around on the stage during his performance

Title: Their cover of It’s A Sin was a fitting choice, as, it shares its name with the critically acclaimed series which starred Olly

Virtual performance:  Singer The Weeknd was also on hand to perform at the show, although he made his appearance virtually

Virtual performance:  Singer The Weeknd was also on hand to perform at the show, although he made his appearance virtually

Covered up: The Canadian musician, real name Abel Tesfaye, could barely visible, covering his face with a wide-brimmed hat

Outerwear: He teamed his headgear with a baggy coat

Covered up: The Canadian musician, real name Abel Tesfaye, could barely visible, covering his face with a wide-brimmed hat

High energy show: Young T & Bugsey, left, performed with grime star Headie One, right, during the star-studded ceremony

High energy show: Young T & Bugsey, left, performed with grime star Headie One, right, during the star-studded ceremony

He said: ‘Thank you BRIT Awards I wish I was there to accept the award, I want to give a shout out to UK fans, if it wasn’t for them I wasn’t be standig here right now, for the people in Ethiopia who are suffering, you are in my heart.’

International Group was given to Haim, who attended the ceremony in person after spending 10 days in quarantine to accept their award.

Taking to the stage they gushed: ‘Oh my god sisters! This is incredible, this is INCREDIBLE, well I mean first ofall, let me get my bearings, first of all the UK was the first place to ever embrace us. In the entire world, and for that honestly we will be forever grateful this is crazy. I’m like shaking wow and usually I’m so composed.’

Closing show: Rag'n'Bone Man closed out the show with a rousing performance of his new track Anywhere Away From Here

Closing show: Rag’n’Bone Man closed out the show with a rousing performance of his new track Anywhere Away From Here

Beamed performance: The musician was joined for the performance by his duet partner Pink, who was beamed onto the stage

Beamed performance: The musician was joined for the performance by his duet partner Pink, who was beamed onto the stage

Voices in unison: A sizeable choir accompanied the stars as they closed out the star-studded ceremony in memorable style

Voices in unison: A sizeable choir accompanied the stars as they closed out the star-studded ceremony in memorable style

Show-stoppers: Their big performance rounded out a slew of show-stopping moments during the star-studded ceremony

Show-stoppers: Their big performance rounded out a slew of show-stopping moments during the star-studded ceremony

Also taking to the stage on the night were Elton John and Years & Years, who teamed up to perform the Pet Shop Boys classic It’s A Sin, after teasing the surprise collaboration on social media ahead of the show.

The Rocket Man hitmaker, 74, took to the stage with Years & Years frontman Olly Alexander, 30, after becoming a huge fan of Olly’s performance as Ritchie Tozer in Channel 4 drama It’s A Sin.  

Olly starred alongside a cast of rising stars and celebrated favourites including Keeley Hawes, Stephen Fry and Neil Patrick Harris and It’s a Sin has been universally praised by fans.  

The 2021 Brit Awards marked the first major indoor music event in over a year as bosses released 2,500 free tickets to key workers, taking place in front of a live audience totalling 4,000 people at London‘s The O2 six days before the next phase of lockdown lifts. 

Look how close they are! The 2021 Brit Awards marked the first major indoor music event in over a year as bosses released 2,500 free tickets to key workers

Look how close they are! The 2021 Brit Awards marked the first major indoor music event in over a year as bosses released 2,500 free tickets to key workers

The ceremony broadcast live on ITV, celebrated the return to live music and nominee Dua Lipa promised those attending that it would ‘be a night to remember’.  

The indoor ceremony and live show formed part of the Government’s scientific Events Research Programme, and will use enhanced testing approaches to examine how events can take place without the need for social distancing after all restrictions are lifted on June 21. 

Working closely with the Government to adhere to safety guidelines, this means The BRITs, was the first live music show at The O2 in over a year, with 4,000 tickets being up for grabs- just one fifth of the venue’s 20,000 capacity. 

The BRITs will play an important role in paving the way for the return of live music at scale as the UK emerges from the past year’s restrictions. 

Audience members were not socially distanced or required to wear face coverings in the arena, but were required to follow existing Government guidance when travelling to the venue and adhere to rules set out by the event organisers.

Among the rules, attendees had to provide proof of a negative lateral flow test result to enter the venue. 

As part of the wider scientific research on the trial events, attendees were also be asked to take a test after the event to gather further evidence on the safety of indoor settings, reduced social distancing and the removal of non-pharmaceutical interventions like face coverings. 

Nominations were unveiled in March, with Celeste, Dua Lipa, Joel Corry and Young T & Bugsey joining Arlo Parks in receiving three nominations each, and Jessie Ware, J Hus, Bicep, AJ Tracey up for two awards as with Headie One. 

No two metres here! Audience members were not socially distanced or required to wear face coverings in the arena, but were required to follow existing Government guidance when travelling to the venue and adhere to rules

No two metres here! Audience members were not socially distanced or required to wear face coverings in the arena, but were required to follow existing Government guidance when travelling to the venue and adhere to rules

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk