2021 Grammy Awards Highlights: Winners, Performances and Fashion


The 63rd annual Grammy awards aired Sunday on CBS and were hosted by comedian Trevor Noah. Women dominated the award show, winning all the major categories and breaking Grammy records. Due to the ongoing pandemic, many traditional aspects of the event had to change, but the artists handled these precautions well, resulting in a fantastic set of performances. 

Many of the artists used lights, costumes and backup dancers to make their performances exciting to watch on television, as there was no live audience. In one of the most talked about performances of the night, Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion performed a television friendly version of their hit song “WAP.” While the lyrics might have been censored, the duo did not hold back on anything else. Clad in Madonna-esque bodysuits, the two exuded confidence grinding on a giant bed and pole dancing on the heel of a 10-foot tall stiletto. It’s no surprise that this was one of the most popular performances of the night — it was sex positive, empowering and fun. Megan Thee Stallion won Grammys for best new artist, best rap performance and best rap song. 

Dua Lipa also used bold costumes and high energy dance numbers in her performance of “Levitating” with DaBaby and “Don’t Start Now.” Her performance included three wardrobe changes (think pink and sparkly) as well as a group of backup dancers wearing pink gogo boots. The highly choreographed dance numbers were mesmerizing and vibrant. Dua Lipa won best pop vocal album for “Future Nostalgia.”  

In a far more understated yet absolutely stunning performance, Taylor Swift sang a medley of songs from “Folklore” and “Evermore.” Her flowing, navy prairie-style dress and the fairytale-inspired set perfectly encapsulated the essence of her latest albums. “Folklore” won album of the year, making Swift the first female performer to win album of the year three times. 

Harry Styles delivered another one of the most popular performances of the night, singing “Watermelon Sugar” while wearing a leather suit and green boa. Despite his flamboyant outfit, the performance was simple and captivating, focusing on his strong and sultry vocals. Styles won best pop solo performance. 

Other big winners for the night include Billie Eilish, who won record of the year for her song “Everything I Wanted.” Meanwhile, Beyoncé walked away with four awards, bringing her total Grammy count up to 28 and making her the most decorated woman in Grammy history. History was made again when 2021 became the first year that four separate women won the top four honors: record of the year (Billie Eilish), album of the year (Taylor Swift), song of the year (H.E.R.) and best new artist (Megan Thee Stallion). 

One of the most coveted parts of an awards ceremony is the red carpet fashion, with best and worst dressed lists making appearances before the show even begins. Because red carpets are typically swarming with celebrities and reporters, the concept had to be changed in light of the pandemic. The Grammys replaced the red carpet with a small “interview-and-photo area” where reporters could ask questions and photograph from a distance. 

Despite the new setup, the 2021 Grammys brought some great looks. Megan Thee Stallion wore a gorgeous orange Dolce & Gabbana gown, and DaBaby rocked a brown paisley-patterned suit and an emerald green hat. Billie Eilish donned a highly patterned Gucci suit complete with a matching mask. 

             For a performance-oriented awards show that thrives on its concert-like atmosphere, it might have been difficult to make COVID-19 accommodations work. However, the Grammys was generally able to retain its personality with glamorous performances and beautiful red carpet outfits. The event was not only entertaining, but — with several women setting records and sweeping the top awards — it made history.