Eminem won the MTV award for Best Hip Hip Video last night for 'We Made You', which spoofs US vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin, Amy Winehouse and Jessica Simpson.
Accepting his award he thanked his fans and Dr Dre, among others, and dedicated the award to the late rapper Proof who was shot dead in 2006, saying: “Proof, this one’s for you.”
His speech was followed immediately by another tribute, to DJ AM who was found dead in his apartment last month.
The celebrity DJ, real name Adam Goldstein, was remembered during Kid Cudi’s performance when his name was flashed on screen.
Lady GaGa was awarded the prize for Best New Act. Wearing red lace from head to toe – even over her face – she thanked her family and fans and held the award in the air, saying: “For God and for the gays this is.”
Pink took to the stage wearing a gold outfit which was slit to the waist on one side, revealing a pink heart-shaped nipple pastie. She performed while suspended in the air, doing a trapeze double act with a male acrobat.
Beyonce’s 'Single Ladies' was eventually recognised, winning Video Of The Year. When she walked on to the stage, she called on Swift to return, saying: “I want Taylor to come up here and have her moment.”
The two singers, both wearing red dresses, shared an embrace before Taylor completed the speech which had been interrupted earlier by West.
The ceremony also included a showing of a trailer for the forthcoming Michael Jackson film 'This Is It', which spliced footage of the 'This Is It' press conference held by Jackson at London’s O2 Arena with archive footage of the star.
Rapper Jay-Z then closed the evening with a performance of 'Empire State Of Mind' with Alicia Keys.
The MTV Video Music Awards 2009 are being shown on MTV tonight at 9pm and are repeated at the same time tomorrow.