The MTV Video Music Awards has been left reeling after from two high profile meltdowns as Lady Gaga and rapper Kanye West stunned the audience.
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Lady Gaga was performing a live performance of Paparazzi at the show in New York last night when she finished the routine by pretending to stab herself while playing the piano.
She smothered herself in fake blood then ended her act by swinging from the ceiling and pretending to be dead.
MTV insiders said that the Poker Face star didn't talk to other acts, saving her words for a profanity-laced award acceptance speech and walking with an exaggerated limp.
The ceremony -- which paid tribute to the late Michael Jackson -- was also overshadowed by an outburst by Kanye West, who interrupted an acceptance speech by US singer Taylor Swift.
West, who is known for his outspoken ways, jumped up on stage while the 19-year-old Swift was making an acceptance speech for best female video for her hit song You Belong With Me, beating singers including Beyonce Knowles and Lady Gaga.
"I am really happy for you," West said. "But Beyonce had one of the best videos of all time."
MTV said West, who was spotted earlier on the red carpet drinking alcohol, was ejected from an awards show already known for its circus-like atmosphere.
West received loud boos from the crowd when his name was mentioned later in the show.
West apologised on his website. "I'm sooooo sorry to Taylor Swift and her fans and her mom," he wrote. "... I'm in the wrong for going on stage and taking away from her moment!"
Beyonce took the show's top honour -- video of the year -- for her single Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It), before recalling her first MTV award with her old band, Destiny's Child, and calling back Swift to the Radio City Music Hall stage to finish her acceptance speech.
"I would like Taylor to come out and have her moment," she said, before the country music star reappeared and thanked her fans.
MTV said Beyonce, Lady Gaga and Green Day won three awards apiece, the most of any artists on this year's awards show.