BRITs 2021 – our showbiz reporter goes out out for a glittering night


ow. Wow. WOW. What a night.

Dua Lipa’s rousing speeches! And her pink-carpet beehive homage to Amy Winehouse AND her Geri Halliwell Union Jack-impressed gown! Sir Elton John and Olly Alexander undertaking It’s A Sin with drag backing dancers! Little Mix turning out to be the first woman team in background (very seriously) to earn British band! Perrie and Leigh-Anne getting to the red carpet with their bumps! Harry Kinds in the actual flesh! Headie One’s epic, dizzying digicam work-filled established! Michelle Obama! Taylor Swift! AND there were being cameos from Line of Duty’s AC-12, social media sensation Jackie Weaver and Sea Shanty star Nathan Evans.

Immediately after 14 months of no reside functions, the Brits 2021 truly did pack it all in.

Before I lay down in a darkish home for the relaxation of the week to get better from all the excitement, I had to share a lowdown of my first evening as Showbiz reporter in fact reporting on a showbiz occasion for what would seem like an eternity.

Much like any “normal” awards ceremony, obtaining completely ready for the Brits 2021 started off 36 several hours before showtime.

Jack Whitehall offered the ceremony

/ Dave Benett

But somewhat than savoring a vacation to the hairdressers, the beauty salon, or a small dash to Whistles, this year’s important pre-Brits prevent was to the Immediate Lateral Circulation Test Centre in Watford.

Go in to showbusiness, they reported. It will be glamorous, they reported.

That all-crucial negative COVID examination was as important as your e-ticket to attend the Brits this 12 months.

As effectively as staying a wonderful return for dwell songs and awards ceremonies soon after 14 months of agonizing Zoom situations entire of awkward glitches and pyjamas on the purple carpet, past night was section of the government’s are living occasions scheme, which is currently being rolled out to aid in-human being functions make a comeback securely article pandemic.

Some 4,000 folks excitedly headed to the 02 Arena past night, which includes 2,500 crucial personnel who gained tickets in a ballot. On arrival, things seemed reassuringly acquainted. Along with your ticket, you confirmed your take a look at final result and then were being swept through safety and to your seat, the place you could choose off your mask and sit near to your neighbour, protected in the know-how that absolutely everyone about you experienced analyzed damaging in the previous 36 several hours.

And the show’s ambiance of is-this-truly-taking place was picked up from the start out, with the physical appearance of two pandemic heroes of the tiny display screen – Line of Duty’s Vicky McClure and Martin Compston – with a pun-crammed sketch comprehensive of additional AC-12 acronyms than there had been attendees. Fortunately, Jackie Weaver – known for her no-nonsense method to THAT council conference – shut down the silliness and it was on with the clearly show.

Coldplay opened with a pre-recorded overall performance

/ PA

Coldplay opened. In a pre-recorded overall performance, the band have been stationed on a pontoon next to the 02 to sing their newest one Increased Power, supported by some dancing holograms.

In standard many years it would have been a interesting digital interlude – but, for me, it was a reminder of the soulless Zoom ceremonies of late and a effective reminder why in-human being is much better.

Luckily, actual Dua Lipa quickly showed up to belt out all her finest hits, on the lookout like a contemporary Spice Woman carrying out in a London Underground Tube practice.

A single of the most important rounds of applause of the evening came not very long just after, when, receiving the Feminine Solo Artist Award, she called on Boris Johnson to shell out NHS team sufficiently although dedicating the gong to Dame Elizabeth Anionwu, the emeritus professor of nursing at the College of West London.

Dua Lipa dedicated her to start with award to Dame Elizabeth Anionwu

Subsequent came my personal spotlight – Sir Elton and Olly Alexander singing Pet Store Boys’ 1980s strike, motivated by Olly’s starring job in Russell T Davies’ smash strike Channel 4 drama named for the track, which powerfully concentrated on the AIDS crisis.

Virtually as charming as the pre-recorded effectiveness was the actuality that Alexander could be viewed dancing in an 02 suite with some of the series’ solid shortly right after his display-stealing set, in jubilant celebration.

The truth that Michelle Obama is only producing a brief visual appeal right here is testament to the jam-packed joys of the night time. The former Very first Lady released The Weeknd as global male winner in a informal cameo. Then, HAIM looked stunned to earn global group. They ended up deserving winners, getting intrepidly travelled to the British isles from the States and consequently almost certainly been forced to invest 10 days in quarantine at a Heathrow Travelodge. I hope, whichever glamorous resort they had been in final evening, they went crazy on the room provider.

Olly Alexander executed It is a Sin with Sir Elton John

/ PA

Harry Types looked as exquisite as ever in a brown patterned match as he recognized his ideal solitary award for Watermelon Sugar. Every person, such as Very little Combine, swooned (potentially not Taylor Swift, while it was difficult to notify), then Headie One particular and AJ Tracey rocked some epic staging (designed by Virgil Abloh) and digital camera do the job to collaborate in a single of the most hanging performances of the evening, which resolved some of the negative stereotypes connected with Drill new music, and in which they praised key staff and the anti-poverty campaigner, footballer Marcus Rashford.

Taylor Swift appeared very 1989-period in a chic Miu Miu range as she accepted her Icon Award – most likely I’m remaining greedy but my 1 compact criticism of the evening would be to question, WHY Did not SHE Accomplish? Certainly the group could have done with a rendition of Shake It Off soon after the 12 months we’ve had?

The good news is then Dua was back, winning most effective album – arguably the most significant gong of the evening – for Foreseeable future Nostalgia, which lifted a good deal of morale when she bravely put it out through the initially lockdown. This time she emotionally dedicated her award to Folajimi Olubunmi-Adewole, acknowledged as Jimi, who died trying to help you save a girl from the Thames last thirty day period.

Dua won the (unofficial) acceptance speech race by a region mile previous night, fast ascending to Queen of the Brits and darling-of-the-pop-planet standing at the tender age of 25.

Dua Lipa, pop world darling

/ Dave Benett

Prior to Lipa’s next win of the night, Lewis Capaldi evoked some outdated-school Brits nostalgia with a sweary, sweaty on-stage visual appearance. dua The musician offered Lipa with finest album, but not right before greeting the group with: “Hello motherf***ers!”. “I’m f***ing sweating. It is like a swamp down there – sweaty bollocks,” he additional.

He then joked: “It’s been a wonderful yr for albums, most of all simply because I have not f***ing produced just one.” In superior news for all those of sensitive dispositions, however, the quick-considering man or woman responsible for bleeping out lousy language for the telly broadcast nailed it and swiftly muted him. Give that particular person a beer!

At last, in a genius transfer, Rag’n’Bone Gentleman and P!nk have been joined by the Lewisham and Greenwich NHS choirs to prime off the evening with a fabulous rendition of the pair’s track Anywhere Away From In this article.

Taylor Swift and Haim experienced an excellent night

While I am a very little bit sad that I am at residence crafting this piece in my PJs possessing not attended little by little much more debauched afterparties at the Ned or the Chiltern Firehouse, I am not absolutely sure I could have coped with any extra enjoyment, pleasure and speculate in one particular night. This was the ideal Brits I have been to in a extensive time – and I have been to a truthful couple of.

Was my unashamed delight simply because I have been bereft of dwell events for 14 very long, soulless months? Maybe, even really probable, but who cares. It was totally superb. It is so, so, SO very good to be back again.