Page last updated at 10:06 GMT, Friday, 6 November 2009

Ladies' night at MTV Europe awards

By Emma Jones
Entertainment reporter, BBC News

Host Katy Perry may have an album called One of the Boys - but it was definitely ladies' night in Berlin at the MTV Europe Music Awards (EMAs).

Katy Perry

Beyonce took three prizes - best female, best song and best video - Lady Gaga was awarded best newcomer and Briton Pixie Lott was given the MTV push artist award.

There were also performances on the night from Leona Lewis, Shakira and Beyonce - not to mention Perry.

She was back as host for the second year running and didn't disappoint, with at least half a dozen changes of outfit.

She performed her links from swings and giant cocktail glasses and even paid homage to Liza Minnelli in Cabaret during a song medley.

"Some of the things that the girls are doing, the way they are performing and delivering it - even halfway done in rehearsals - is just brilliant," Perry told BBC News.

"It feels like entertainers at their prime, which they have to be these days."

Christmas market

This year, the event returned to Berlin - the scene of MTV's first ever European Music Awards in 1994 - to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall.

Tokio Hotel
German band Tokio Hotel won best group

It was fitting, then, that Tokio Hotel - one of Germany's most successful bands of all time - took best group ahead of the international competition.

Of course, a number of the artists at this year's EMAs could not remember the fall of the wall.

Among them was Pixie Lott.

"I was born in 1991," she said apologetically.

U2, meanwhile, had already achieved international stardom.

They took best live act and proved they deserved it by playing a free concert for 10,000 fans at the Brandenburg Gate. Rapper Jay-Z, who won best urban act, also took part.

As well as being a spectacular televisual event, the EMAs give record labels the chance to showcase their star artists for the Christmas market.

Rock singer and actress Juliette Lewis, who presented an award, said: "I like to think that the power these days is truly with the independent artists and not so much these big corporate conglomerates.

David Hasselhoff
David Hasselhoff was among stars who presented awards

"That said - here we all are. The artists show up, and I am here too to celebrate that music and those artists."

As well as Beyonce's big wins, it felt like another night of safe choices. Green Day won best rock act, Placebo were best alternative act and Eminem was best male - beating Robbie Williams who pulled out of the event last week.

MTV's equivalent awards in the US, the Video Music Awards, were wreathed in controversy after Kanye West interrupted Taylor Swift's acceptance speech.

One could sense the organisers' relief that this had passed off without incident.

The press may have been disappointed - it is, after all, when things go wrong that awards ceremonies grab the biggest headlines.

The most memorable event at this year's EMAs was the appearance of former Baywatch star and sometime pop star David Hasselhoff to present a prize.

He had sung on top of the Berlin Wall in 1989 and was introduced as "the man responsible for the fall of the wall".

That seemed like a fitting tribute to Germany's embrace of pop culture in the intervening two decades.

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