By Emma Niland
Despite the smallest TV audience and lowest ratings in its history, this year’s American Music Awards (AMAs) was anything but a disappointment. Held at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles, the awards show was a hotspot for Hollywood’s hottest celebrities.
Pop singer Taylor Swift stole the show winning six awards, including Artist of the Decade and Favorite Pop/Rock Female Artist, surpassing Michael Jackson’s AMAs record of 24, bringing her total to 29 awards.
Wearing a white dress with the names of her albums before Lover for her performance, it was obvious that Swift was trying to make a statement, and it was a bold one to say the least.
Swift’s ongoing “feud” with music producer Scooter Braun and her previous record label Big Machine Records proved itself to still be quite relevant the night of the awards show. Braun recently bought the rights to all of Swift’s old music, and there was speculation regarding which songs Swift would perform at the AMAs. According to Swift, Braun and Big Machine Records weren’t allowing her to perform any of her tracks previous to her new album Lover, which was produced by her new record label, however in a public statement released by Braun leading up to the show, doing so would be “illegal.”
Fortunately for her fans, Swift’s highly anticipated performance was, at a minimum, above satisfactory. Singing a medley of some of her biggest hits—“The Man,” “Lover,” “I Knew You Were Trouble,” “Blank Space,” and “Shake It Off”—Swift shined on the AMA stage and even brought up special guests for some of her songs. Camila Cabello and Halsey were brought up for “Shake It Off” and professional dancer Misty Copeland performed a ballet routine to Swift’s piano version of “Lover.”
Swift was not the only celebrity in the spotlight last night, however.
Rap/hip-hop artist Post Malone went into the night with seven nomination－the most at the show－but only winning one award: Favorite Rap/Hip-Hop Album with Hollywood’s Bleeding, which featured established artists Ozzy Osbourne, Travis Scott, DaBaby, and SZA, among others. Malone closed his acceptance speech for the award with the now viral phrase: “We love you very much and I love grapes.”
Seventeen-year-old star Billie Eilish was nominated for six awards and took home two: New Artist and Favorite Alternative Artist. For her performance of “All Good Girls Go To Hell,” Eilish wore an oversized t-shirt with the words “NO MUSIC ON A DEAD PLANET” printed on it. Oversized clothing isn’t anything new for Eilish, but her obvious notion towards acting against climate change did not go unnoticed.
As such a young artist, it is no surprise that Eilish seems astounded each time she is awarded something in front of an audience. In her acceptance speech for Favorite Alternative Artist, Eilish told the audience, “I grew up being in love with all of you,” referring to the other artists present who had been her biggest inspirations as a young child.
Other major winners of the night include Halsey with her song “Without Me” taking Favorite Pop/Rock Song. After being snubbed any Grammy nominations for the chart-topping hit, Halsey made sure to show some extra love for the AMAs, as well as throw some shade towards the Grammys, in her acceptance speech.
Pop artist Khalid’s success that night signifies how incredible his year truly was. With his single “Talk,” Khalid set records with top charts, and it won the award for Favorite Soul/R&B Song. Khalid took home two more awards this year, including Favorite Pop/Rock Male Artist and Favorite Soul/R&B Album with Free Spirit.
One of Hollywood’s newest, and most flamboyant couples Shawn Mendes and Camila Cabello, took home the award for Collaboration of the Year with their song “Señorita.”
Yet again, Mendes and Cabello performed a steamy rendition of “Señorita.” Mendes and Cabello aren’t shy about PDA, and their performance Sunday night undoubtedly demonstrated that, but then again, the majority of their performances together now do.
Immediately following the pair’s performance, a short clip of actress Jenna Dewan went viral on social media. In the video, Dewan is recorded watching Cabello perform with Mendes and then turning around to a companion behind her with a disgusted look supposedly saying, “She’s always so extra.”
The video caused almost instantaneous backlash from fans of both Cabello and Dewan, and Dewan posted a video to her Instagram story denying the alleged “shade” thrown at Cabello. Dewan pleaded with her 5.7 million followers in the video that she was only being supportive of Mendes and Cabello during their performance, and that she is Cabello’s “biggest fan” and that she loves her.
The show ended with one final award: Artist of the Year, which was awarded to none other than the queen of pop herself: Taylor Swift. In her acceptance speech, Swift said, “All that matters to me is the memories I have had with you guys, with you the fans, over the years.”
Through the emotional highs and lows of the night, the 2019 AMAs certainly did not disappoint, and Hollywood’s celebrities and their amusing lives and talents are to be thanked.