There were also performances by Bruno Mars, The 1975, Coldplay, Ed Sheeran, Robbie Williams and grime musician Skepta. A pinstripe-clad Katy Perry performed ‘Chained to the Rhythm’ accompanied by a pair of giant skeletons dressed as U.S. President Donald Trump and British Prime Minister Theresa May which complimented the lyrical references to zombified people “living in a bubble”.

The international awards went to Drake for International Male Solo Artist, Beyonce for International Female and A Tribe Called Quest took the trophy for International Group.

Adele, who took four Grammys last week, won this year’s Global Success award, which recognizes international sales.

The award for British Breakthrough aAtist went to Rag ‘n’ Bone Man, whose song Human has had heavy play of late, beating nominees including the favoured grime musician Skepta. Grime artists Stormzy and Kano, reflecting the growing artistic and commercial clout of the distinctly British rap genre.

Stand out moments of the night were centered around two stars who are no longer with us. Coldplay singer Chris Martin performed a moving rendition of George Michael’s A Different Corner — duetting with a recording of George himself and backed by a group of violins.

David Bowie was crowned British Male Artist of the Year and won British Album of the Year for Blackstar, released days before his death.

Bowie’s son, filmmaker Duncan Jones, accepted the best album award on behalf of his father, who he said had “always been there supporting people who think they’re a little bit weird or a little bit strange, a little bit different.”

“This award is for all the kooks, and all the people who make the kooks,” Jones said.
Kooks is the song Bowie wrote for his son when he was born.

The flashy show at London’s O2 Arena opened Little Mix giving a thunderous performance of ‘Shout Out to My Ex’, backed by a troupe of silver-pained dancers. The song went on to be named British single of the year.