brits 2021

Taylor Swift Becomes the First Woman to Win Brits’ Global Icon Award

Taylor Swift. Photo: BRITs/YouTube

Noted lover of London Taylor Swift became the first non-British woman to win the Brits’ Global Icon Award this evening. She accepted her prize live from the O2 Arena on Tuesday, bangs aflutter with excitement. Game of Thrones star Maisie Williams presented the award, saying Swift’s “ability to stand up for what she believes in has made her an inspiration around the world.” Some of the singer’s close friends and peers — Selena Gomez, Ed Sheeran, Zoë Kravitz, Annie Lennox, and the BRITs’s latest Rising Star, Griff — spoke in a reel, celebrating Swift’s countless accomplishments. “My soul left my body when Annie Lennox was on that video,” Swift reacted on stage. “That was like a thousand surprise birthday parties, where all your friends are jumping out like Ah!’ and you’re just like, ‘This is the best.’”

The Global Icon award celebrates an artist who has made an “immense” worldwide impact through music and advocacy. Previous winners are Robbie Williams, Elton John, and David Bowie, making Swift the first woman, the youngest, and the first non-Brit. (Really earning that “Miss Americana” title.) In her acceptance speech, Swift thanked her British fans for all the support over the years, even when the pandemic kept her away. “Hey, because of you, last year I even almost played Glastonbury. We all know what happened next. The world changed, and I ended up making three albums instead,” she said, thanking “the amazing, creative people” she made folklore and evermore with, such as her boyfriend, whom she simply calls Joe. Before finishing, she addressed all the “incredible new artists” in the room and the dreamers watching at home. “If you’re being met with resistance, that probably means that you’re doing something new. If you experience turbulence and pressure, that prob means you’re rising. And there might be times when you put your whole heart and soul into something and it’s met with cynicism or skepticism. You can’t let that crush you. You have to let that fuel you.”

Taylor Swift Becomes First Woman to Win Brits’ Global Icon