Justin and Christina triumph as Edinburgh puts on the glitz for TV Europe awards

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The Independent Culture

Beyonce, Christina Aguilera and Justin Timberlake cleaned up at the MTV European music awards in Edinburgh last night.

The awards, celebrating their 10th anniversary, were watched by a worldwide audience of one billion people, in addition to the 2,000 who bought the £34 tickets for the live concert in just 14 minutes.

Christina Aguilera, who won the award for best female, set the tone of the ceremony when she appeared on stage dressed as a nun before embarking on a theatrical striptease as she sang her hit song "Dirrty".

She was followed by Beyoncé, who scooped the award for best song for "Crazy in Love", featuring JayZ.

She poured on the high-octane fuel in a sparkly silver dress by singing a raunchy rendition of her new single "Baby Boy" with Sean Paul

Justin Timberlake was awarded the best album prize for Justified, best male artist, best pop act, and best album. "I felt really, really blessed," he said.

Eminem won the accolade for best hip-hop artist for the fifth consecutive year.

Other prize winners included Sean Paul, who was named as the best new act, Panjabi MC, with the best dance award, and the White Stripes, who picked up the award for the best rock act.

But it was Scotland's homegrown stars who were the true stars of the night.

For Sharleen Spiteri, of Texas, and Shirley Manson, the lead singer of Garbage, it was a prime time opportunity to extoll the virtues of their homeland and heritage. "This is my home city and I am proud that we are hosting the awards tonight," said Manson. To have people coming from down south to our country is fantastic and we welcome it.

"It's just a pity that more Scottish people couldn't come here on the night."

Spiteri added: "When I come to Edinburgh I am still amazed at how fantastic it is. At the end of the day it is really good for everybody to be here and we're really happy to be invited."

The event had been enticed to the city with the offer of a £750,000 incentive from the Scottish Executive, Scottish Enterprise and Edinburgh City Council, much to the distress of less glamorous art forms, which have been fighting for cash.

Last night, Jack McConnell, the First Minister, described how he hoped the awards ceremony would put Scotland firmly on the musical map.

The event was expected to generate more than £4m to the Edinburgh economy. He said: "It is the best place in the world for a party and everybody has been having a great time.

"I hope they will come back and I hope we can see further ceremonies like this in the future.

"I think the impact has been much larger than we could ever have hoped for. Tonight shows Scotland is a great place to party and also a very good place to hold an event like this."

An estimated 8,000 hotel rooms were booked for the event, 140 limousines transferred stars to and from the ceremony and 28 hairstylists were backstage, using an estimated 300 cans of hairspray.

The presenters and performers themselves enjoyed a goody bag of gifts including Ballantines Scotch and a weekend in Stobo Castle.


BEST GROUP: Coldplay

MALE ARTIST: Justin Timberlake

FEMALE ARTIST: Christina Aguilera

SONG: Crazy in love, Beyoncé Knowles

ALBUM: Justified,

Justin Timberlake

POP ACT: Justin Timberlake


ROCK ACT: The White Stripes

VIDEO : Untitled 1, Sigur Ros

NEW ACT: Sean Paul

R&B ACT: Beyoncé Knowles