Lily Allen scoops top prizes at Ivor Novello Awards

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The Independent Culture

British singer Lily Allen broke down in tears Thursday as she scooped three prizes at the Ivor Novello Awards, which recognise excellence in songwriting.

Her hit track "The Fear" won prizes for the most performed work and the best song musically and lyrically, while Allen was named songwriter of the year along with her writing partner, producer Greg Kurstin.

"Thank you, I'm trying so hard to hold it together," the 25-year-old said, wiping away tears as she picked up the award at a ceremony in London.

"This song is so much about feeling so lost... it has made me feel quite found all of a sudden."

Winners are chosen by composers and songwriters themselves and an A-list crowd of musicians attended the event including Paul Weller, who was given the lifetime achievement award by a reverent Noel Gallagher.

Anglo-Pakistani star Bat for Lashes, real name Natasha Khan, won the prize for best contemporary song for "Daniel" which she admitted to having written in her pyjamas in bed. "I'm so shocked, thank you," she said.

The award for best album went to Scottish singer/songwriter Paolo Nutini for "Sunny Side Up", and he praised the special nature of the Ivor Novello awards.

"It's an honour to get an award voted for by songwriters... happy days and thanks for the support," he said in a statement on his website afterwards.

Former Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr, who has worked with the Pet Shop Boys and Bryan Ferry among others, was awarded the inspiration prize and received a hug from Gallagher as he moved through the audience.

"I sincerely hope that there will be a lot more twists and turns because that's what I like to do. I believe that rock music and pop music is an art form," he said.

Tim Rice, who worked as lyricist to Andrew Lloyd Webber's musicals for many years, received the academy fellowship, one of the biggest gongs.

Imogen Heap won best international achievement award, producer Trevor Horn won the outstanding contribution to British music prize and Neil Sedaka won the special international award.

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