Pop superstar Taylor Swift took home the top prize at MTV’s Video Music Awards on Tuesday evening, winning video of the year and other honours for her hit “Anti-Hero”.
The first single from Swift’s “Midnights” album, “Anti-Hero” is a tale of insecurities with a chorus declaring: “It’s me, hi, I’m the problem, it’s me”.
“This is unbelievable,” the singer said on stage as she held her Moon Person statuette. “The fact this is a fan-voted award means so much to me.”
Earlier, the 33-year-old appeared thrilled to be receiving the pop video award from members of 1990s boy band NSYNC, the group that won the same honour 20 years ago.
“I had your dolls!” Swift said to band members including Lance Bass and Justin Timberlake. “You are pop personified. So to receive this from your golden pop hands, it’s too much.”
“Anti-Hero” also won song of the year and best direction.
Among other winners, rapper Ice Spice was named best new artist. Stray Kids, a band put together through a reality show, won the best K-pop award, and SZA scored best R&B video for “Shirt”.
Rema and Selena Gomez won the first VMA for Afrobeats music for their collaboration “Calm Down”.
Performers at the ceremony, held at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey, included Demi Lovato, Lil Wayne, Olivia Rodrigo, host Nicki Minaj and rapper Sean “Diddy” Combs, who received the Global Icon award.
Minaj, who won the best hip hop video trophy, also joined Grandmaster Flash, LL Cool J and other rap luminaries for a multi-song celebration of the 50th anniversary of hip hop that concluded with Run DMC’s “Walk This Way”.
Colombian pop singer Shakira was honoured with the Video Vanguard Award for lifetime achievement. After performing a bilingual medley of her hits including “Hips Don’t Lie” and “Whenever, Wherever,” the singer saluted her fans.
“Thank you so much for being my army and helping me fight all my battles,” she said.