Viewing figures for the BRIT Awards have plummeted for the fourth year in a row, with 2.9million tuning in – 860,000 less than last year.
The show was broadcast on ITV on Tuesday night following three months of delays, and had an audience share of 18%, down from 20.5% in 2020.
Viewers watching the show at home took to social media to say the BRITs had become ‘more about music than politics’, following Dua Lipa’s call for Boris Johnson to give NHS staff a bigger pay rise.
Awards: BRITs viewers praised Dua Lipa’s NHS pay rise speech on Tuesday but others claim the show should be ‘more about music than politics’ as show loses 860,000 viewers since last year
Show ratings have fallen by more than a million since 2018, where 4.24million tuned in.
But some viewers took to Twitter saying they had switched the channel after growing tired of stars using their speeches to discuss politics.
During the ceremony Dua, 25, had taken aim at the Prime Minister after the Conservative Party revealed plans for a 1% pay rise for NHS workers who have been working on the frontline throughout the pandemic.
Political: Some viewers took to Twitter saying they had switched the channel after growing tired of stars of using their speeches to discuss politics (pictured Boy George)
BRIT Awards viewing figures
2021 – May 11
2020 – February 20
2019 February 20
2018- February 21
As she accepted her Best Female Solo artist gong, which she dedicated to nurse Dame Elizabeth Anionwu, Dua said: ‘She [Dame Elizabeth] has spent her stellar nursing career fighting racial injustice. She has spent so much time and is a strong advocate for protecting frontline workers, thank you.
‘She has also said that there is a massive disparity between love and respect for frontline workers, because we need to clap them but we need to pay them, so I think what we should do is give a massive round of applause and give Boris a message that we all support a pay rise for our frontline.’
One viewer wrote on Twitter: ‘Love her!! Also that she read the brief and actually dedicated her other award on the evening #heroes.’
‘Fair play it seems that Dua Lipa is the only one that did her homework and chose people to dedicate her awards to’, wrote another.
‘Dua Lipa using her award to campaign for a fair pay rise for key workers, we love to see it,’ chimed a third.
Support: Dua was widely praised on social media for saying NHS workers need a pay rise. ‘Dua Lipa using her award to campaign for a fair pay rise for key workers, we love to see it’
‘Fair play to Dua Lipa for calling for a decent pay rise for NHS workers,’ typed a different viewer.
‘Dua Lipa telling Boris Johnson to give the NHS a bigger pay rise live on the Brit Awards is brilliant, a different fan Tweeted.
However others said Dua was ‘point-scoring’ and that it would be better if local MPs replied to emails.
One wrote on Twitter: ‘My daughter is a long serving ICU nurse, she reckons she is on a good salary like others wouldn’t mind a pay rise, but stop politicising it. It would be more useful if our local MP deigned to reply to emails from his constituents instead.’
Another added: ‘When a wealthy person like Dua Lipa calls for a pay rise for the NHS, it’s a bit hollow. I doubt she uses the NHS. It’s more of a points-scoring and popularity move.’
A different viewer wrote: ‘Emotional #DuaLipa pays tribute to heroic London Bridge rescuer and calls for NHS workers to be paid more. Another award show destroyed by politics for personal gain in the #Liberal media from the stars.. No wonder we don’t watch but they don’t even care.’
Another viewer chimed: ‘Politics, politics, politics. Forget it. This is about celebrating music. Can we not forget it for one night.’
Divided opinion: However others said Dua was ‘point-scoring’ and that it would be better if local MPs replied to emails
Comedian: Host Jack also made a number of politically-inspired jokes throughout the show
Host Jack also made a number of politically-inspired jokes throughout the show, including: ‘The music industry has had it tough this year, but there have been some good news stories. Laurence Fox’s tragic foray into politics that meant at least he’s finally stopped making music.’
He also quipped: ‘This test event is kicking off! They’re having the times of their lives, but tomorrow they’ll be in one of Professor Chris Whitty’s graphs.’
As Boy George took to the stage to present Best Single, he said: ‘Big shout out to our key workers, God bless all of you. I just want to ask you to #GhanaGetsBetter and #UgandaGetsBetter for the LGBTQI+ people in Africa who are really being persecuted right now.’
Raising awareness: As Boy George took to the stage to present Best Single, he said: ‘Big shout out to our key workers, God bless all of you. I just want to ask you to #GhanaGetsBetter’
After a number of other stars also used their screen time to discuss their political stances, one wrote on Twitter: ‘One day I will be able to watch #brits without thinking I’m watching Question Time. Even if I agree it’s nice to have some time off from politics. Music, tv, film, sports are all being hijacked by politics.’
‘#BRITs = The Woke Awards,’ said another.
‘Brits. Music great but award ceremonies are so worthy and political now. Each acceptance speech more woke than than the last,’ typed a third viewer.
‘@rickygervais petition to get you to host the brits next year, get rid of this woke propaganda off my screen,’ another Twitter user wrote.
Iconic: Also during the show, Elton John and Years and Years Olly Alexander also took to the stage to perform It’s A Sin for Elton’s Aids charity and the duo received rave reviews
Also during the show, Elton John and Years and Years Olly Alexander also took to the stage to perform It’s A Sin for Elton’s Aids charity.
Viewers watching at home loved the rendition. One typed: ‘Just watched back Elton John and Years and Years’ rendition of It’s a Sin from The Brits last night. Seriously just give @alexander_olly ALL the awards ever…’
‘Just seen Elton John and Years & Years version of ‘it’s a sin’ – quite impressive, and in aid of Elton’s Aids charity too’, another fan chimed.
The awards ceremony truly belonged to Dua as the evening saw her scoop the accolade for Female Solo Artist and the Mastercard British Album of the Year Award for her lockdown hit Future Nostalgia.
Talented: ‘Just seen Elton John and Years & Years version of ‘it’s a sin’ – quite impressive, and in aid of Elton’s Aids charity too’, one fan wrote
This year’s Rising Star award winner Griff was handed the baton for the honour by 2020’s Rising Star winner Celeste, who herself was up for three further awards.
And Arlo Parks was crowned Breakthrough Artist, one of the three awards the star was nominated for, after what has been an incredible year for the young London artist.
She also made her debut BRITs performance with an elegant rendition of Hope and decorated the set as a sunflower field in a nod to the name of her debut album.
The most nominated girl band in BRIT Award history, Little Mix, finally bagged the title of British Group and made history as the first-ever girl band to win, having been up for the award three previous times.
Meanwhile, the International Group category followed a similar suit, with the California girlband HAIM in attendance to accept their award.
One to watch: The awards ceremony truly belonged to Dua as the evening saw her scoop the accolade for Female Solo Artist and the Mastercard British Album of the Year Award
And the accolade for International Female was given to the 19-year-old Bad Guy hitmaker Billie Eilish, who accepted the award via a pre-recorded video acceptance speech.
The Weeknd emerged victorious in the International Male Solo Artist category with his award presented by the former First Lady of the United States, Michelle Obama.
The Blinding Lights hitmaker treated the audience to an unforgettable performance of his single Save Your Tears, pre-recorded from the US.
Dem Boy Paigon hitmaker JHUS scooped the Male Solo Artist award, which was accepted on his behalf by DJ Semtex in his absence.
Following a successful awards season stateside, One Direction heartthrob Harry Styles scooped Best British Single with his summertime track Watermelon Sugar.
The first female artist to win the highest BRITs accolade and the UK’s biggest selling artist of the year to date, Taylor Swift appeared in person to accept the special Global Icon award, which was presented by Game Of Thrones actress Maisie Williams.
One Direction: Following a successful awards season stateside, One Direction heartthrob Harry Styles scooped Best British Single with his summertime track Watermelon Sugar
BRIT AWARDS WINNERS 2021
FEMALE SOLO ARTIST
DUA LIPA – WINNER
LIANNE LA HAVAS
MALE SOLO ARTIST
J HUS – WINNER
LITTLE MIX – WINNER
YOUNG T & BUGSEY
BRITs RISING STAR
GRIFF WARNER – WINNER
ARLO PARKS COLLAPSED IN SUNBEAMS
CELESTE NOT YOUR MUSE
DUA LIPA FUTURE NOSTALGIA – WINNER
J HUS BIG CONSPIRACY
JESSIE WARE WHAT’S YOUR PLEASURE?
HAIM – WINNER
RUN THE JEWELS
ARLO PARKS – WINNER
YOUNG T & BUGSEY
220 KID & GRACEY DON’T NEED LOVE
AITCH & AJ TRACEY FT TAY KEITH RAIN
DUA LIPA PHYSICAL
HARRY STYLES WATERMELON SUGAR – WINNER
HEADIE ONE FT AJ TRACEY & STORMZY AIN’T IT DIFFERENT
JOEL CORRY FT MNEK HEAD & HEART
NATHAN DAWE FT KSI LIGHTER
REGARD & RAYE SECRETS
S1MBA FT DTG ROVER PARLOPHONE
YOUNG T & BUGSEY FT HEADIE ONE DON’T RUSH
INTERNATIONAL FEMALE SOLO ARTIST
BILLIE EILISH – WINNER
INTERNATIONAL MALE SOLO ARTIST
TAME IMPALA FICTION
THE WEEKND – WINNER