Adele, Rihanna, Justin Bieber Anchor 2016 BRIT Awards With Fiery Performances

Adele, Rihanna, Bieber Anchor Brit Awards
David Fisher/REX Shutterstock

LONDON — By the riverside, the Brit Awards made their annual attempt to lift the lid off London’s O2 dome, as the likes of Rihanna, Drake and Jess Glynne blasted out their finest vocals on Wednesday night.

Coldplay kicked off the evening’s performances, later picking up the group gong; a success leaving Chris Martin brave, playfully impersonating losers One Direction in his speech.

Male solo and international male solo winners James Bay and Justin Bieber, respectively, must have been looking for companionship; they teamed to perform a duet by a roaring campfire. This must’ve sparked inspiration in Rihanna, who decided to set the stage alight in a more unique way — teaming with Drake to perform new single “Work,” grind and twerk.

There was little doubt, though, that the night belonged to Adele, who nabbed four Brits. By her third acceptance she was in tears. “I got really lost for a while — I didn’t know if I’d come back,” she cried. Then composing herself, she joked to her home crowd, “Not too bad for a girl from Tottenham!”

Emotions were high as Gary Oldman took to the stage to accept his old friend David Bowie’s posthumous Icon Brit. Voice unsteady, Oldman reminisced about his comrade. “He reminded us to not take life too seriously,” said Oldman. “David was funny. Hilariously so, and the laughs were many and massive; and I shall miss them.” Lorde then took to the stage, delivering a tribute performance of Bowie’s “Life on Mars” to a standing ovation.

Finally, back on form, Adele proved the eternal Brits star, with her rendition of “When We Were Young” closing the proceedings. Post kudofest those deemed special enough were shipped by boat along the Thames for Universal Music’s now famed after-party, where it’s rumored, in talent-on-the-decks tradition, this year Bieber’s being put to good use.

A complete list of the evening’s winners follows:

MasterCard British Album of the Year
Adele, 25 — WINNER
Coldplay, A Head Full of Dreams
Florence & the Machine, How Big How Blue How Beautiful
James Bay, Chaos & the Calm
Jamie XX, In Colour

British Artist Video of the Year
Adele, “Hello”
Calvin Harris & Disciples, “How Deep Is Your Love”
Ellie Goulding, “Love Me Like You Do”
Jessie J, “Flashlight”
Little Mix, “Black Magic”
Naughty Boy Ft. Beyonce, Arrow Benjamin, “Runnin (Lose It All)”
One Direction, “Drag Me Down” — WINNER
Sam Smith, “Writing’s on the Wall”
Years & Years, “King”

International Female Solo Artist
Ariana Grande
Bjork — WINNER
Courtney Barnett
Lana Del Rey
Meghan Trainor

British Breakthrough Act
Catfish & the Bottlemen — WINNER
James Bay
Jess Glynne
Wolf Alice
Years & Years

International Male Solo Artist
Father John Misty
Justin Bieber — WINNER
Kendrick Lamar
The Weeknd

British Group
Coldplay — WINNER
One Direction
Years & Years

British Single
Adele, “Hello” — WINNER
Calvin Harris & Disciples, “How Deep Is Your Love”
Ed Sheeran & Rudimental, “Bloodstream”
Ellie Goulding, “Love Me Like You Do”
James Bay, “Hold Back the River”
Jess Glynne, “Hold My Hand”
Little Mix, “Black Magic
Olly Murs ft. Demi Lovato, “Up”
Philip George, “Wish You Were Mine”
Years & Years, “King”

British Female Solo Artist
Adele — WINNER
Amy Winehouse
Florence & the Machine
Jess Glynne
Laura Marling

British Male Solo Artist
Aphex Twin
Calvin Harris
James Bay — WINNER
Jamie XX​
Mark Ronson

International Group
Alabama Shakes
Eagles of Death Metal
Major Lazer
Tame Impala — WINNER

Critics’ Choice
Jack Garratt — WINNER
Izzy Bizu

British Producer of the Year
Charlie Andrew — WINNER
Mark Ronson
Mike Crossey
Tom Dalgety

Global Success Award

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