The Brit Awards will eliminate the men’s and women’s categories at next year’s awards ceremony, featuring neutral gongs instead.
The awards will be presented to Artist of the Year and International Artist of the Year, replacing best male and female solo artist and best international male and female solo artist.
The British Academy has faced pressure to end its specific awards for men and women and says the move will honor artists “just for their music and work, rather than how they choose to identify or how others might see them, as part of The British commitment to developing the program to be as inclusive and relevant as possible”.
The British Voting Academy is made up of around 1,200 music industry experts in media, artists, record labels, publishers, promoters, retailers and much more.
Pop star Sam Smith, who won the Critics’ Choice Award in 2014 and identifies himself as non-binary using the pronouns they/they, had already called for change, saying he expected a time when awards programs were “reflective of the society in which we live”.
He felt unable to enter last year’s awards due to the gender-based categories – despite his album Love Goes reaching number two on the UK charts.
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“The British have been an important part of my career,” added the 29-year-old singer. “Music for me has always been about unification, not division. I look forward to a time when awards shows can reflect the society we live in. We will celebrate everyone regardless of gender, race, age, ability, sexuality and class. “
The 2022 ceremony will also feature four new awards, all of which will be decided by public vote – alternative / rock act; hip hop / grime / rap; dance act and pop act / R’n’B.
Meanwhile, the Music of the Year award will also recognize featured artists, rather than just top artists or nominated contributors.
The show will return on February 8, 2022, with comedian Mo Gilligan as host, replacing Jack Whitehall, who has directed the event for the past few years.
Gilligan said: “It is an absolute privilege to host the 2022 Brit Awards. I’m really honored to be invited.
“We’re already in the extensive planning stages and all I can say is, I promise we’ll give everything we have to create an amazing night out for music fans everywhere. Come on!”
Nominations show The Brits Are Coming will be hosted by Clara Amfo and Maya Jama, who will also host the show on the red carpet.
Tom March, chairman of Brit and co-chairman of Polydor Records, said: “It’s important that Brits continue to evolve and aim to be as inclusive as possible.
“It feels like a completely right time to celebrate the achievements of artists for the music they create and the work they do, regardless of genre.”
“I’m excited to release four new genre awards, which create even more opportunities for artists to be recognized for the brilliant music they create and produce, and give music fans a chance to get involved and vote to support their artists and help. them to win a British.
“The 2022 show is shaping up really well, Mo is going to be an excellent presenter and I’m grateful to him, along with Clara and Maya, for being a part of this year’s Brits.”
The Brit Awards 2022 will air on ITV on February 8th live at the 02 Arena in London.