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2016 Billboard Music Awards: The Weeknd Leads Winners on Night Dominated by Women


Dick Clark Productions

The 2016 Billboard Music Awards was all about The Weeknd, who grabbed eight trophies, including Top Hot 100 Artist, Top R&B Artist, Top R&B Song for “The Hills,” and Top R&B Album for Beauty Behind the Madness. Adele took home five awards, including Top Female Artist, Top 200 Album for 25, and the big one, Top Artist.

The Weeknd dedicated his Top 100 Artist award to Prince, who died suddenly last month. In The Weeknd’s acceptance speech, he noted that the legendary artist was an inspiration to him, helping him “push the envelope.”

Adele, who is currently on tour and couldn’t make it to the telecast, accepted her award via pre-taped messages. “It’s lovely to be in everyone’s company,” Adele said in her video acceptance speech for Top Artist, adding, “I’m about to go on stage!”

The show also featured the premiere of the video for Adele’s new single “Send My Love (To Your New Lover).” The psychedelic clip for the third release from her album 25 shows the singer draped in a flowing, floral gown set against a black background with multiple Adeles appearing in kaleidoscopic form.

Britney Spears, opened the show, taking the stage in a pink top hat and jacket, before stripping down to a more revealing outfit and performing a medley of hits that included “Work B****,” “Womanizer,” “Breathe on Me,” “Slave 4 U,” “Toxic” and a chorus of Joan Jett‘s “I Love Rock ‘N Roll” for good measure.

Kesha, whose appearance on the show was up in the air at one point due to her ongoing lawsuit with her producer, Dr. Luke, ended up paying tribute to Bob Dylan, backed by Ben Folds on piano. They performed the Dylan classic “It Ain’t Me Babe.”

Pink gave a breathtaking performance, soaring high in the air suspended by ropes and surrounded by flames as she belted out “Just Like Fire,” from the upcoming film Alice through the Looking Glass.

Céline Dion, who was the recipient of this year’s Icon Award, delivered a powerful performance of Queen’s “The Show Must Go On,” backed by violinist Lindsey Stirling. Afterwards, her son, Rene-Charles Angelil surprised her by walking on stage to make the presentation. After thanking her fans and crew, she made a special dedication — in French — to her late husband Rene Angelil, who lost his long battle with throat cancer in January Choking back tears, Dion closed her speech by declaring, “The show must go on.”

The Go-Go‘s, who made history during the 1980s as the first and only all-female band that both wrote their own songs and played their own instruments to top the Billboard album charts, reunited on stage and performed their hit, “We Got the Beat.”  The band is launching a farewell tour this summer after 38 years together.

The highlight of the evening was Madonna and Stevie Wonder teaming up for a touching tribute to Prince. After Madonna performed Prince’s “Nothing Compares 2 U,” made famous by Sinead O’Connor, Wonder joined her for a duet on Prince’s classic “Purple Rain.” The musical tributes were introduced by The Roots‘ drummer Questlove, who noted the music legend affected all of us, “no matter what kind of music we make, no matter how long we made it, no matter our race, our color or our creed or sexual orientation,” adding that Prince’s departure from the land of music “was an earthquake.”

The night’s lineup also included the following performances:

Shawn Mendes, “Stitches”
Fifth Harmony featuring Dolla $ign, “Work from Home”
Meghan Trainor, “No”
Justin Bieber, “Company” and “Sorry”
Nick Jonas and Tove Lo, “Close”
Demi Lovato, “Cool for the Summer”
DNCE, “Cake by the Ocean”
Lucas Graham, “7 Years.”
Ariana Grande, “Dangerous and “Into You”
Gwen Stefani and Blake Shelton, “Go Ahead and Break My Heart”

The three-hour show, broadcast live on ABC from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, was hosted by Ludacris and Ciara. 

Here are the 2016 Billboard Music Award winners:
Top New Artist:
Fetty Wap
Top Male Artist:
Justin Bieber
Top Female Artist:
Top Duo/Group:
One Direction
Top Billboard 200 Artist:

Top Hot 100 Artist:
The Weeknd
Top Song Sales Artist:
The Weeknd
Top Radio Songs Artist:
The Weeknd
Top Streaming Songs Artist:
The Weeknd
Top Social Media Artist:
Justin Bieber
Top Touring Artist:
Taylor Swift
Top R&B Artist:
The Weeknd
Top Rap Artist:

Top Country Artist:
Luke Bryan
Top Rock Artist:
twenty one pilots
Top Latin Artist:
Romeo Santos
Top Dance/Electronic Artist:
David Guetta
Top Christian Artist:
Hillsong UNITED
Top Gospel Artist:
Kirk Franklin

Top Billboard 200 Album:
Adele, 25

Top Soundtrack:
Pitch Perfect 2
Top R&B Album
The Weeknd, Beauty Behind the Madness
Top Rap Album:
Meek Mill, Dreams Worth More than Money
Top Country Album:
Chris Stapleton, Traveller
Top Rock Album:
twenty one pilots, Blurryface
Top Latin Album:
Juan Gabriel, Los Dúo

Top Dance/Electronic Album:
Zedd, True Colors
Top Christian Album:
Lauren Daigle, How Can It Be
Top Gospel Album:
*Kirk Franklin, Losing My Religion
Top Hot 100 Song:
Wiz Khalifa ft. Charlie Puth, “See You Again”
Top Selling Song:
Adele, “Hello”

Top Radio Song:
WALK THE MOON, “Shut Up And Dance”
Top Streaming Song (Audio):
The Weeknd, “The Hills”
Top Streaming Song (Video):
Silentó, “Watch Me”

Top R&B Song:
The Weeknd, “The Hills”
Top Rap Song:
Wiz Khalifa ft. Charlie Puth, “See You Again”
Top Country Song:
Thomas Rhett, “Die A Happy Man”
Top Rock Song:
WALK THE MOON, “Shut Up And Dance”
Top Latin Song:
Nicky Jam & Enrique Iglesias, “El Perdón
Top Dance/Electronic Song:
Major Lazer & DJ Snake ft. MØ “Lean On”
Top Christian Song:
Hillsong UNITED “Oceans (Where Feet May Fail)”
Top Gospel Song:
Kirk Franklin, “Wanna Be Happy?”
Fan Voted Billboard Chart Achievement Award:

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