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Billie Eilish and Lil Nas X deliver storming stage shows at the Grammys

The night also featured tributes to Prince and Kobe Bryant.

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Billie Eilish on stage at the Grammy Awards (Matt Sayles/AP/PA)

Billie Eilish on stage at the Grammy Awards (Matt Sayles/AP/PA)

Billie Eilish on stage at the Grammy Awards (Matt Sayles/AP/PA)

Billie Eilish, Camila Cabello and Lil Nas X delivered a flurry of live performances at the 62nd Grammy Awards – a night overshadowed by the death of Kobe Bryant.

US pop star Eilish made her debut at the Staples Centre in Los Angeles, alongside her brother and songwriter Finneas O’Connell.

The 18-year-old sported her trademark green hair, a sparkling white blouse and dark green nail extensions.

Eilish, who was nominated for six awards, perched on a stool as she performed the piano ballad When The Party’s Over.

Cabello reduced her father to tears with a heartfelt performance of First Man, a song about their relationship.

And Ariana Grande performed a risque medley of her songs including Seven Rings, and Thank You, Next, dressed in white heels, a fur jacket and stockings.

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She was backed by an orchestra and singers in lingerie.

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Ariana Grande flanked by dancers (Matt Sayles/AP/PA)

Ariana Grande flanked by dancers (Matt Sayles/AP/PA)

AP/PA Images

Ariana Grande flanked by dancers (Matt Sayles/AP/PA)

It comes after Grande cancelled her planned performance at last year’s event, accusing Grammys organiser Ken Ehrlich of refusing to allow her creative freedom.

Lil Nas X performed a high-energy rendition of his hit Old Town Road with K-pop boy band BTS, viral country singer Mason Ramsey, Diplo and Billy Ray Cyrus.

The event also saw FKA Twigs, Sheila E and Usher pay tribute to Prince, who died on April 21 2016, performing a medley of songs including When Doves Cry and Kiss.

The awards opened with a tribute to Bryant after the retired basketball player was killed in a helicopter crash hours before the ceremony began.

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Lil Nas X with BTS (Matt Sayles/AP/PA)

Lil Nas X with BTS (Matt Sayles/AP/PA)

AP/PA Images

Lil Nas X with BTS (Matt Sayles/AP/PA)

A shell-shocked audience reflected on the death of Bryant, his teenage daughter and seven others in the Sunday morning crash.

Host Alicia Keys said the ceremony was cloaked in sadness following the deaths.

“We’re all feeling crazy sadness right now,” she said. “Because earlier today Los Angeles, America, and the whole wide world lost a hero.”

Keys, standing in the same arena where former Los Angeles Lakers star Bryant spent much of his glittering career, added: “We’re literally standing here heartbroken in the house that Kobe Bryant built.”

She said all the helicopter crash victims are “in our spirit, our hearts, they’re in our prayers, they’re in this building”.

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Tributes outside the Staples Centre (Matt Hartman/AP/PA)

Tributes outside the Staples Centre (Matt Hartman/AP/PA)

AP/PA Images

Tributes outside the Staples Centre (Matt Hartman/AP/PA)

She asked the star-studded audience inside the Staples Centre to remember the victims, adding: “We never imagined in a million years we’d have to start the show like this.”

Boyz II Men joined Keys on stage for a moving performance of their song It’s So Hard To Say Goodbye To Yesterday.

Earlier, nominee Lizzo performed two of her hit songs, Cuz I Love You and Truth Hurts, saying before she began: “Tonight is for Kobe.”

Recording Academy chief executive Harvey Mason Jr opened the pre-show, where the bulk of the night’s 84 awards were distributed, by paying tribute to Bryant.

He said: “As most of you may know, we lost Kobe Bryant in a tragic helicopter accident today. Since we are in his house, I would ask you to join me in a moment of silence.”

Fans gathered outside the Staples Centre to pay tribute, leaving flowers and wreathes.


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