2020 Billboard Music Awards

Katherine Langley, Music Beat Reporter

All the stars turned out Wednesday for the 2020 Billboard Music Awards. Even without an audience, the night was filled with exciting performances and big wins. Did you miss the show? Here’s what you need to know!

Kelly Clarkson hosted the event for the third consecutive year and kicked off the night with a performance of her own, singing Whitney Houston’s “Higher Love” with Pentatonix and Sheila E. 

Country singer Garth Brooks was honored with this year’s Icon Award. Presenter Cher described him as “breaking down barriers.” He accepted the award by performing a medley of some of his best-loved songs. 

Post Malone swept the competition at the show, taking home nine awards out of his 16 nominations, including top artist. “I’m honestly blown away, just by the love everybody’s shown to me,” Malone said. The star also performed his songs “Circles” and “Tommy Lee” with the help of Tyla Yaweh.

The other big winner of the night was Billie Eilish, who picked up the awards for top new artist and top album for her record, “When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?” The eighteen-year-old thanked fans and reminded them to wear a mask, wash their hands and vote. 

Eilish was not the only one taking a political stance on Wednesday. Pop artist Lizzo, who accepted the award for top song sales, wore a dress covered with the word “VOTE” and delivered a powerful call to action. “When people try to suppress something, it’s usually because that thing holds power; they’re afraid of your power. There’s power in who you are. There’s power in your voice,” Lizzo said. 

Demi Lovato also encouraged voting with her performance of her song “Commander In Chief.” In the track, Lovato condemns President Donald Trump’s leadership, saying, “commander in chief, honestly/ if I did the things you do/ I couldn’t sleep, seriously.” 

Also making waves was rapper Killer Mike of Run the Jewels, who won Billboard’s first-ever change maker award for his work in activism. 

Another moving moment was John Legend’s return to the stage after his wife, Chrissy Tiegen, suffered a misscarriage. Legend dedicated a tear-jerking rendition of his song, “Never Break,” to Tiegen. 

Several other big names took the stage Wednesday. Doja Cat performed a medley of her singles, “Juicy,” “Say So” and “Like That” with outfits and sets inspired by Broadway’s “Chicago.” This year’s throwback performance was “Free Your Mind” by En Vogue, a song with the message of social justice. 

Other performers included Sia, Kane Brown, Khalid, Swae Lee, Bad Bunny, Brandy and Luke Combs. Even without an audience, all the musicians gave high-energy performances that brought people together at home.