Adele is today at the centre of an extraordinary row between transgender rights activists and feminists after she took a stand against the ultra-woke ‘genderless’ Brit Awards by declaring: ‘I love being a woman’.
Her speech while collecting Artist of the Year at the 02 Arena in London sparked uproarious cheers from the audience and viewers at home took to social media to say: ‘Thank GOD she has said it’.
The Brits axed separate male and female prizes for best solo and best international acts in 2022 to avoid upsetting several artists, including former Brit winner Sam Smith, who identifies as non-binary.
Collecting the award Adele said: ‘I understand why the name of this award has changed. But I really love being a woman and being a female artist I do I’m really proud of us’.
And some Adele fans have already said she offended non-binary people and branded her a TERF – a derogatory term for a feminist who excludes the rights of transgender women also thrown at the singer’s friend JK Rowling.
One LGBTQ activist said: ‘Please, no, ADELE can’t be a TERF. That last comment, though ambiguous, could be perceived as TERF-Y. Please no’. Another critic said: ‘I love Adele but that ‘woman’ comment seemed like a bit of a dig, non binary artists deserve better’.
But women’s rights groups have praised her stance. A spokesman for charity Safeguard Women & Girls said: ‘Yes, women are part of society, 50% actually. @Adele you make every woman I know proud. You’re an inspiration to many of what can be achieved’.
Journalist and women’s rights activist Inna Shevchenko said: ‘Welcome to the Brave Inclusive New World: Now saying “I really love being a woman, I really love being a female artist” is enough to be labeled as a Terf and a transphobe’.
While feminist Victoria Smith tweeted: ‘It’s really nice to hear someone saying she loves being a woman. I increasingly think a lot of what we see as generational tension in feminism comes down to a form of self-hate – “I’m ashamed of being female, I don’t want to become *that*”.’
Despite the furore, publicists who have represented some of the world’s biggest stars told MailOnline that Adele’s stance on the genderless Brit Award will be good for her career – branding her ‘musical Teflon’.
Adele’s declaration that she ‘loves being a woman’ has caused a row over trans rights
Dazzling: Adele dazzled the audience with an incredible performance of her single I Drink Wine during the night
Adele’s appearance at the Brits is her first for five years – and is her first since becoming the best selling artist in the world
PR guru and crisis management expert Mark Borkowski told MailOnline that the star may have upset her record label bosses – but they have no power to ‘cancel’ her while she continues to be the world’s top selling artist.
Has Adele got engaged to her sports agent boyfriend?
What’s that? Adele was seen flashing a diamond ring on her wedding finger – sparking speculation she was engaged to Rich Paul
Glitz: The pear-shaped diamond certainly stood out on her hand as she posed up a storm
Making her first appearance since cancelling her US shows, she drew attention to a giant pear-shaped diamond ring, prompting speculation that she was engaged – a week after shrugging off rumours of a rift with her sports agent boyfriend Rich Paul.
Her appearance marked five years since her last Brits performance, and 14 years since she won her first Brit – the Critics’ Choice Award aged 19 in 2008.
However, her comments will present a ‘risk’ for Adele, especially as she lives in the ‘woke capital’ of the world, Los Angeles.
He said Adele was ‘channeling authenticity’ in London last night, and proving she is a ‘giant personality’ who is ‘not a vanilla effigy pouring out messages to suit a woke agenda’.
‘There is a mass of posturing in the corporate world of pop music. Just like a slew of multi-national conglomerates rushing to make the right noise that most people see as virtue signalling’, the PR expert said.
‘It was pleasing to see Adele channeling authenticity – true to her brand, Adele is a giant personality. She is a leading light proving you don’t have to lose your much loved status by reflecting what you believe in. Fans and non fans want to engage with a personality not a vanilla effigy pouring out messages to suit a woke agenda’.
With some critics calling on her to apologise, Mr Borkowski said her success should allow her to resist, no matter the pressure due to the modern cancel culture.
‘Adele has power whilst she continues to deliver the hits. She takes the lead and she is an influencer’, he said, adding: ‘High flying fame is difficult to navigate – so yes risks are all around. For Adele its unrelenting she is judged constantly on the now. Maintaining positive PR, when you are global star, is akin to running a gruelling marathon daily. Adele seems a sensitive soul so there is always a danger she could get sucked into a battle that will prove exhausting. There is a curse being a national treasure’.
Gary Farrow, who worked with Elton John, Wham, George Michael, David Bowie amd Paul Young, said that Adele should be praised for he honesty, having been given an award she had not chosen to name herself.
He added that he believed that she will have been ’embarrassed’ by the cancellation of her Las Vegas residency, but won’t be damaged by telling the world she ‘loves being a female artist’ – including in ultra-woke California.
He said: ‘She never renamed the award – she just found herself in it. Irrelevant of where she lives and what’s happened recently, you only have to see her performance to realise she has class. She is the nearest thing we’ve had to Sinatra’.
Mr Farrow said he doesn’t believe Adele will be forced to apologise or clarify her remarks, dubbing her ‘musical Teflon’.
Adele was branded a TERF by some critics after her speech. Supporters thanks her for telling the ‘TRUTH’
‘I’m gutted’: Adele previously revealed in a tearful video that she had been forced to postpone her massively popular upcoming Las Vegas residency due to COVID-19 cases among crew members – and claims she wasn’t happy with the set up
The singer left fans devastated after cancelling her Las Vegas residency at the 11th hour last month – and leaving many of them massively out of pocket due to flights and accommodation they had booked.
But Adele was back in the limelight last night as she triumphed with a triple win at the Brit Awards.
The London-born singer scooped the coveted titles of Artist of the Year, Album of the Year for 30 and Song of the Year for comeback single Easy On Me at a newly gender-neutral ceremony dominated by women at the capital’s O2 Arena.
Commenting on how male and female categories were scrapped, she said: ‘I know this category has changed but I really love being a woman and a female artist.’
Adele was in tears as she dedicated the album award to her son Angelo, nine, and ex-husband Simon Konecki. She said: ‘This was all of our journeys. Not just mine.
‘My son has been so gracious. So gracious and kind and patient with me over the last couple of years. It is for him.’
Adele, 33, arrived in a custom black gown by Giorgio Armani Prive, with a spotted collar that tied into a bow and train. Making her first appearance since cancelling her US shows, she drew attention to a giant pear-shaped diamond ring, prompting speculation that she was engaged – a week after shrugging off rumours of a rift with her sports agent boyfriend Rich Paul.
Her appearance marked five years since her last Brits performance, and 14 years since she won her first Brit aged 19. Other winners included female-fronted band Wolf Alice, Dua Lipa and Becky Hill.
Ed Sheeran, 30, who was wearing a striking cobalt blue suit, failed to win in the four nominations he received against Adele. But he was honoured with the new Songwriter of the Year award.
BRIT AWARDS 2022: WINNERS
ARTIST OF THE YEAR
Adele – WINNER
Wolf Alice – WINNER
BRITs RISING STAR
Holly Humberstone – WINNER!
SONG OF THE YEAR
A1 & J1 – Latest Trends
Adele – Easy On Me – WINNER
Anne-Marie/KSI/Digital Farm Animals – Don’t Play
Becky Hill & David Guetta – Remember
Central Cee – Obsessed With You
Dave ft. Stormzy – Clash
Ed Sheeran – Bad Habits
Elton John & Dua Lipa – Cold Heart (Pnau Remix)
Glass Animals – Heat Waves
Joel Corry/Raye/David Guetta – Bed
KSI – Holiday
Nathan Evans/220Kid/Billen Red – Wellerman
Riton x Nightcrawlers ft. Mufasa & Hypeman – Friday
Tion Wayne & Russ Millions – Body
Tom Grennan – Little Bit Of Love
BEST NEW ARTIST
MASTERCARD ALBUM OF THE YEAR
Adele – 30- WINNER
Dave – We’re All Alone In This Together
Ed Sheeran – =
Little Simz – Sometimes I Might Be Introvert
Sam Fender – Seventeen Going Under
Dua Lipa – WINNER
Becky Hill- WINNER
Sam Fender – WINNER
HIP-HOP, GRIME, RAP
Billie Eilish- WINNER
Lil Nas X
Silk Sonic/Bruno Mars/Anderson .Paak – WINNER
The War On Drugs
BEST INTERNATIONAL SONG
ATB / Topic / A7S – Your Love (9PM)
Billie Eilish – Happier Than Ever
Ckay – Love Nwantiti (Ah Ah Ah)
Doja Cat ft SZA – Kiss Me More
Drake ft Lil Baby – Girls Want Girls
Galantis, David Guetta & Little Mix – Heartbreak Anthem
Jonasu – Black Magic
Kid Laroi & Justin Bieber – Stay
Lil Nas X – Montero (Call Me By Your Name)
Lil TJ & 6lack – Calling My Phone
Maneskin – I Wanna Be Your Slave
Olivia Rodrigo – Good 4U – WINNER
Polo G – Rapstar
Tiesto – The Business
The Weeknd – Save Your Tears
PRODUCER OF THE YEAR
Inflo – WINNER
SONGWRITER OF THE YEAR
Ed Sheeran – WINNER
PICTURE EXCLUSIVE: Go easy… on my feet! Adele is worlds away from her BRITs red carpet glam as she swaps designer heels for fluffy slippers and kicks back with cigarettes ahead of McDonald’s treat
Despite wowing with her glamorous looks on the red carpet, Adele showed she was more akin to the masses following a night out, as she ditched her heels for a pair of slippers to head home from the 2022 BRIT Awards on Tuesday.
The hitmaker, who scooped three gongs including the coveted Album Of The Year, was seen leaving the star-studded ceremony in London’s O2 Arena with a box of cigarettes nearby, presumably heading to McDonalds to celebrate her win before heading back to her flat in the capital.
During her acceptance speech, Adele admitted she had no plans to attend any of the awards’ lavish after parties despite her triple victory, instead planning to grab a takeaway before having an early night.
Someone like you! Adele showed she was more akin to the masses following a night out, as she ditched her heels for a pair of slippers (circled far right) to head home from the 2022 BRIT Awards on Tuesday
Time for bed? The hitmaker, who scooped three gongs including the coveted Album Of Year, was seen leaving the star-studded ceremony in London’s O2 Arena with a box of cigarettes nearby (right) after ditching her heels for slippers (left)
Following her much-anticipated appearance at the awards, Adele made a low-key exit in her eye-catching black velvet minidress, having ditched her stilettos for comfy slippers.
The hitmaker sipped from a plastic cup while focusing on her phone as the car drove away, following her long-awaited appearance at the ceremony.
Ahead of the evening, Adele was asked whether she had any plans to attend an afterparty, but she stated: ‘I’m going back to my flat with McDonalds and a bottle of wine.’
Relaxed: After a night of glamour and awards sparkle, Adele jumped into a waiting car outside London’s O2 Arena, no doubt to grab a McDonalds after she revealed her post-awards plans on the red carpet
Ready for bed? After a show-stopping evening, Adele shunned the traditional afterparties, admitting on the red carpet: ‘I’m going back to my flat with McDonalds and a bottle of wine’
It was a successful night for the star who took home the Best Song Award for Easy On Me, Album Of The Year for 30 and the Artist Of The Year award.
She beat hotly-tipped contender Ed Sheeran in the Artist Of The Year category – which now includes artists of all genders – after they both released long-awaited albums around the same time last year.
During her acceptance speech, Adele told the audience: ‘I understand this award has changed but I love being a female artist!’, as she referenced the changes the awards board had made to the ceremony.
Let the good times roll: And she wasn’t the only star seen making an exit, with the likes of Courteney Cox and her beau Johnny McDaid among the partygoers heading home following the after parties
Party time: The likes of Becky Hill and Laura Whitmore led the hordes of partygoers heading home from various afterparties in the early hours after toasting another successful awards show
Crikey: One of Becky’s pal was even seen tugging down her dress to show off her assets after their boozy celebrations
And she wasn’t the only star seen making a bleary-eyed exit following the BRITs, with the likes of Courteney Cox, Becky Hill and Laura Whitmore led the hordes of partygoers heading home from various afterparties in the early hours after toasting another successful awards show.
Courteney, 57, seemed in high spirits as she left the O2 Arena alongside boyfriend Johnny McDaid after the pair took to the stage during the ceremony to present an award.
The actress wrapped up warm as she draped a jacket over her black silk long-sleeved shirt that she had paired with a matching skirt.
Meanwhile, Becky, 27, was clearly in the mood to celebrate after she scooped her first BRIT Award for for Best Dance Act.
Quick change: Becky swapped her emerald gown for a white sequin mini dress with a feathered hem
Stamina: While she seemed rather worse for wear as she left the O2, Becky wasn’t ready to call it a night just yet and headed to another bash at The Box nightclub
Fun times: Becky was having the time of her life as she larked around with pals outside of the venue
A night to remember: She was joined on the evening by her husband Iain, with the duo catching a taxi home together
The Lose Control singer was seen puffing on a cigarette as she staggered into the back of a taxi alongside her friends – who put on a very raucous display for the cameras – with one pal even tugging down her dress to show off her assets.
Becky wowed in a sequin emerald mini dress which showed off her toned and tanned pins and featured stunning embellishment with glittery and chiffon sections.
While she seemed rather worse for wear as she left the O2, Becky wasn’t ready to call it a night just yet, later changing into a white sequin mini dress with a feathered hem as she headed to another bash at The Box nightclub.
Laura Whitmore appeared all partied out as she staggered out of the venue with her husband Iain Stirling’s jacket draped over her.
Wild night: Bleary-eyed Emily Atack clambered into the back of a taxi with Strictly’s Graziano Di Prima, Vick Hope and Donna Preston as she left the raucous BRITs O2 afterparty
On the move: The actress, 32, was in high spirits as she sidled up to Strictly Come Dancing professional Graziano after clambering into the back of a black taxi
Loving life: Also living it up on the night was The Saturdays star Mollie, who put on a very animated display as she bounded out of the O2 Arena alongside her pals after a night of partying
All aboard the party bus! Mollie was seen heading out of the venue on a London tour bus that picked up partygoers
Say cheese! Raye wowed in an amber thigh-split gown as she joined her pals on the party bus
Having fun? Mo Farah seemed to be having the time of his life in the taxi home
The Love Island host, 36, cut a glamorous figure in a black velvet mini dress, which featured a cut out section across her midriff and bejewelled detailing all over.
The thigh-grazing style highlighted her long toned legs, which she further elongated with a pair of towering black strappy heels.
She was joined on the evening by her husband Iain, with the duo catching a taxi home together.
Also living it up on the night was The Saturdays star Mollie, who put on a very animated display as she bounded out of the O2 Arena alongside her pals after a night of partying.
Keeping hydrated: Griff wasn’t ready to stop the party as she sat in the back of her taxi with a large glass of wine
Keeping it casual: Vicky McClure donned colourful trainers and a patterned silk blouse as she joined a friend at the Shoreditch House afterparty
Had a bit too much? Geordie Shore’s Sophie Kasaei threw her middle finger up at photographers while leaving
The singer, 34, was unmissable as she dazzled in a bright yellow halter neck dress with key hole detail and bows on the front.
Emily Atack also looked in high spirits as she left the O2 afterparty and sidled up to Strictly Come Dancing professional Graziano Di Prima after clambering into the back of a black taxi.
The pair were joined by pals including Vick Hope and Donna Preston as they headed home after a wild night of partying.
Pour it up: Wolf Alice celebrated their Group Of The Year award by toting a bottle of champagne
Loving life: Sam Fender threw an afterparty with his pals at Four Quarters in Peckham after scooping his award
Congrats! Sam wielded his BRIT award after he and his band took home the trophy for Best Rock/Alternative
Despite much anticipation around Adele’s performance, many fans were left unimpressed, as it came just weeks after she cancelled her Las Vegas residency.
Her appearance came as she continues to face backlash for leaving fans thousands of pounds out of pocket when she pulled the plug on her Stateside shows with just 24 hours notice.
Several fans took to social media to react to Adele’s performance at the awards show, with one writing: ‘I wonder if they’re showing this Adele #Brits performance in Las Vegas? Too soon?’
Another said: ‘You playing Vegas now? Band seem OK on the Brits! @Adele’.
Another fan wrote: ‘So Adele can’t manage her concerts in Vegas, which by the way cost the earth, but she can turn up to the Brits where she’s won awards and is basically headlining the show’.
One added: ‘No hate to Adele but how can she cancel her Vegas residency and then come and perform at the Brits’.
Adele did not address criticism over her cancelled Vegas residency during the awards show.
Adele beat hotly-tipped contender Ed Sheeran in the Artist Of The Year category – which now includes artists of all genders – after they both released long-awaited albums around the same time last year.
During her acceptance speech, Adele told the audience: ‘I understand this award has changed but I love being a female artist!’, as she referenced the changes the awards board had made to the ceremony.
The BRIT Awards sparked controversy last year after ditching the traditional male and female categories and switching to gender-neutral gongs for the first time in its history, causing naysayers to brand the event ‘woke’.
Organisers divided opinion and some were left outraged by the decision to switch to gender-neutral gongs for the first time in its history, in calls led by non-binary singer Sam Smith.
Bosses claimed the move was in a bid ‘to be as inclusive and as relevant as possible’ and allowed people to enter who do not identify as a man or woman.
But fans at the time blasted the change as ‘woke drivel’ at the time, with many calling for a boycott.
Reaction: Several fans took to social media to react to Adele’s performance at the awards show, with one writing: ‘I wonder if they’re showing this Adele #Brits performance in Las Vegas? Too soon?’
During the evening, Adele – who arrived at the ceremony on the red carpet wearing a huge diamond ring on her engagement finger – swept the board following her return to the BRITs, where she took home gongs in all three categories that she was nominated in.
During her speech for her third award, for Best Album, Adele emotionally decidated the gong to her son Angelo and her ex-husband Simon.
Tearful Adele, said: ‘Thank you, again the company I’m in really is phenomenal. Thanks to everyone I work with. But I want to dedicate this to my son. And his dad. Because it’s about them. I’m really proud of myself for sticking to my guns and putting out something so personal. It’s not something people do anymore.’
‘My son has been so gracious and patient with me over recent years. So it’s for him.’
Winner: It was a successful night for the star who took home the Best Song Award for Easy On Me, Album Of The Year for 30 and the Artist Of The Year award
Back home: Adele – who has been hiding out at boyfriend Rich Paul’s home in recent weeks – touched down at Heathrow on the weekend
Also thanking her producer she said: ‘Someone who was integral to this album is producer of the year Inflo. He also works with Little Simz. He helped me so much.’
Along with Adele, there were also performances by Ed Sheeran, Anne-Marie, Liam Gallagher, Dave, Little Simz, and this year’s Rising Star award winner, Holly Humberstone.
Adele – who has been hiding out at boyfriend Rich Paul’s home in recent weeks – touched down at Heathrow on the weekend and was seen making her way into the airport’s Windsor Suite.
Rich, 40, was not seen at the airport after the sports agent found himself wrapped up into the controversy over the Vegas residency, which Adele cancelled just a day before she was supposed to begin performing last month.
A source at the rehearsals told Page Six late that the singer often made sobbing calls to her boyfriend that interrupted rehearsals.
‘Adele’s been crying and couldn’t get through a single full rehearsal for the past month,’ said the source, who was connected to the Caesars Palace management team. ‘Just constantly on the phone with Rich… loudly shouting and sobbing.’
They added: ‘She has barely rehearsed because she is constantly in the middle of an emotional shootout.’
The two were also rumored to be experiencing a rough patch in their relationship of six months, but Adele tried to squash it on social media last week.
Grateful: During her speech for her third award, for Best Album, Adele emotionally decidated the gong to her son Angelo and her ex-husband Simon
She added: I’m really proud of myself for sticking to my guns and putting out something so personal. It’s not something people do anymore’
Adele said: My son has been so gracious and patient with me over recent years. So it’s for him’
She confirmed that she would be performing at the BRITs, and added at the end of her post, ‘Oh, and Rich sends his love.’
Amid the furore surrounding her Vegas residency, it’s been claimed that Adele wants to reduce her working commitments and make her career ‘more about her music’ following the cancellation of her Las Vegas shows.
The Mail on Sunday reported that she plans to ‘go back to basics’ after a high-profile PR campaign to promote her album, 30, including two TV specials.
Insiders say this explains her decision to appear at the BRITs and on Graham Norton’s chat show this Friday.
Impressive: Adele won in every single category that she was nominated in
Thanks: BRITs organisers divided opinion and some were left outraged by the decision to switch to gender-neutral gongs for the first time in its history, in calls led by non-binary singer Sam Smith
A source said: ‘There have been times in the past six months when things got too big. There have been tensions within Team Adele.
‘One minute she was living life away from the limelight, the next she was being interviewed by Oprah Winfrey.
‘Adele loves the Brits. It’s where she feels at home. She used to be interviewed by The Face magazine who really appreciated her work, then she ended up being interviewed by someone in Australia who hadn’t even listened to her album.
‘Underneath all of the millions of pounds is a normal girl from Tottenham who is not remotely big time.’
The 2022 BRIT Awards was truly Adele’s night as she brought her complete tally of BRIT trophies to 12 since winning the first ever Rising Star award in 2008.
Wow: The hitmaker ensured all eyes were on her as she donned a figure-hugging black plunging gown
Success: Adele sparked engagement rumours as she showed off a diamond ring while walking the red carpet
Rock: Adele, who is dating sports agent Rich Paul, displayed an eye-catching rock on her engagement finger
Animated: The star larked around on the red carpet as she flaunted the ring
History: Adele confirmed she and Rich were an item when she shared a red heart emoji alongside an Instagram photo of the couple on September 19 last year
Adele was presented with the prestigious Mastercard Album of the Year for the third time, having won for her previous two albums in 2012 and 2016 – the only solo artist in BRITs history to have won this award three times.
The songstress also became the first ever recipient of the BRITs’ inaugural Artist of the Year award, with her third victory claimed with the win for Song of the Year for Easy On Me.
The International counterparts to these new categories similarly saw two unbeatable global artists celebrated; with Billie Eilish picking up International Artist of the Year and Olivia Rodrigo presented with International Song of the Year for Good 4 U – the biggest selling international single of the year in the UK.
International Group went to Silk Sonic – the collaborative superduo consisting of US artists Bruno Mars and Anderson .Paak.
Making her BRITs debut both on stage with an electrifying two-song performance, and in this year’s shortlists, Little Simz was presented with Best New Artist, beating off competition from Central Cee, Griff, Joy Crookes and Self Esteem.
She was joined on stage by actress Emma Corrin. The Mercury Prize winning London band Wolf Alice won Best Group, the second year they had been nominated in this category.
The 2022 BRITs Rising Star shortlist saw three incredible female artists compete for the coveted prize, as chosen by critics and heads of music to identify the future stars of British music.
Winner Holly Humberstone got to perform to her biggest audience yet with a rendition of her new single London is Lonely, and was introduced on stage by last year’s Rising Star recipient, Griff.
The BRITs in 2022 saw a number of changes to awards categories in order to create even more opportunities for artists to be recognised.
The recipient of the BRITs’ first ever Songwriter of the Year award tonight went to Ed Sheeran before he performed a second number, The Joker and The Queen later in the show.
Having picked up two awards last year, Dua Lipa, was awarded with Pop/R&B Act, and having received her first ever BRIT nominations this year Becky Hill was awarded Dance Act.
Alternative/Rock Act went to Sam Fender (bringing his UK record label Polydor’s tally of trophies up to 5), who later in the show went on to wow the audience with a performance of his Top Ten hit single Seventeen Going Under.
British rap royalty Dave was presented with the award for Hip Hop/Grime/Rap Act by Arsenal legends Ian Wright and Bukayo Saka, and closed the ceremony with a triumphant performance of In The Fire, where he was joined by fellow rappers Ghetts, Giggs, Fredo, Konyikeh and Meekz.
Presenters on the night included Courtney Cox and Johnny McDaid, Brian Cox, Vicky McClure, Jodie Whittaker, Mo Farah, Tom Daley and Ronnie Wood.