LONDON (REUTERS) - Singers Dua Lipa and Stormzy were the biggest winners at this year's Brit awards, Britain's most high-profile pop music awards, taking two trophies each at an event that saw performances from some of music's biggest acts.
Lipa was named best female solo artist and breakthrough act at the British Record Industry Trust (Brit) awards, held in London on Wednesday (Feb 21), while rapper Stormzy won the British male solo artist prize and British album of the year for "Gang Signs & Prayer."
Ed Sheeran took the global success award but lost in the three other categories in which he was nominated, while One Direction star Harry Styles won for video of the year by a British artist. Foo Fighters took the prize for international group.
US rapper Kendrick Lamar was named best international male artist, with New Zealand singer Lorde taking the female solo artist honours.
The event featured performances from the likes of Sheeran, Lipa and Lamar, who rapped on top of a glass cube containing a luxury car that was smashed up by a man wielding a bat.
Lamar's act appeared to suffer from technical difficulties that muted periods of his performance, leading fans on social media to express their frustration.
Other artists went for grand scale. Justin Timberlake opened the show with a rendition of "Say Something" accompanied by a scores-strong choir dotted throughout the audience, while Dua Lipa was accompanied by dozens of dancers, also scattered throughout the arena.
Many of the stars in attendance wore white roses on the red carpet and during the show as a gesture of support for the Time's Up and #Metoo movements against sexual harassment and abuse and supporting women's rights.
"It does make a difference," Lipa told Reuters on the red carpet of the protest. "We are protesting in our own way and this how we're going to make a difference." The show also saw Oasis front man Liam Gallagher perform "Live Forever" in a tribute to the victims of a suicide bombing attack on a venue hosting a concert by US pop star Ariana Grande in Manchester in May 2017, which killed 22 people.
British media outlets reported that Gallagher had been added to the line-up at the last minute, to replace a planned tribute performance by Grande, who dropped out due to illness.