Brit Awards 2021 back with a bang with Little Mix tears, Jack Whitehall swearing and drunk Lewis Capaldi

THE Brit Awards returned with a bang tonight as Jack Whitehall took a swipe at Rita Ora, Little Mix fought back tears and Harry Styles baffled fans with his new accent. 

The incredible event, which featured an audience of 4,000 people as part of the Government's live events pilot scheme, saw 2,500 key workers cheer on the biggest names in music – marking the return of live music to London's O2 Arena after more than a year.

Read our Brit Awards 2021 blog for the latest news and updates

Jack Whitehall kicked off the event with a sketch featuring Line Of Duty stars Vicky McClure and Martin Compston, as well as social media sensation Jackie Weaver, who went viral with her contributions to a parish council meeting.

He went on to leave viewers in hysterics as he took aim at Rita Ora for her illegal party in the Covid pandemic and Piers Morgan being forced off Good Morning Britain.

The host later shocked as he launched into a sweary rant, which bosses failed to bleep out in time.

Coldplay delivered a performance of their new single Higher Power from a pontoon on the River Thames, surrounded by hologram dancers and against a backdrop of purple and orange fireworks.

Billie Eilish saw off competition from artists including Cardi B and Taylor Swift to win the international female solo artist gong, while Arlo Parks said it was her "dream to true" to be named breakthrough artist.

Little Mix made history as the first female group to win the best British group prize.

The group – Leigh-Anne Pinnock, Jade Thirlwall and Perrie Edwards – thanked former bandmate Jesy Nelson and girl groups including Spice Girls who paved the way.

Dua Lipa took home the female solo artist Brit for a second time and called on Boris Johnson improve pay for NHS workers.

Afrobeats star J Hus also won the male solo artist Brit Award.

Audience members attending the indoor ceremony were not socially distanced or required to wear face coverings once seated.

However, they needed proof of a negative lateral flow test result to enter the venue and will be required to provide details to NHS Test and Trace and follow Government guidance while travelling.

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