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This year’s MTV awards feature an all-female artist of the year category for the first time

Taylor Swift is one of the nominees for the artist of the year category.
Taylor Swift is one of the nominees for the artist of the year category. Copyright Jessica Christian/AP
Copyright Jessica Christian/AP
By Rebecca Ann Hughes with AP
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Taylor Swift, Beyoncé, Doja Cat, Nicki Minaj, Karol G and Shakira are contending for the night's top prize.

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The MTV Video Music Awards return on Tuesday night in the US and it’s a momentous year for female artists.

For the first time, only women have been nominated in the show's artist of the year category.

Taylor Swift, Beyoncé, Doja Cat, Nicki Minaj, Karol G and Shakira are contending for the night's top prize.

Last year, only one female artist made the list. Lizzo was nominated for the award which was won by Puerto Rican rapper Bad Bunny. In 2021, five of the six nominees were female, but Justin Bieber came out as the winner.

The VMAs, which take place at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey, will also see a solo female host. Minaj emceed alongside Lil Wayne and Jack Harlow last year, but this year she’s going it alone.

The show will also celebrate 50 years of hip-hop with a star-studded, multi-generational finale performance featuring DMC, Doug E. Fresh, Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five, LL Cool J and Minaj.

The VMAs kick off at 8 pm EDT on Tuesday and will air on MTV and simulcast on BET, BET Her, CMT, Comedy Central, Logo, MTV2, Nickelodeon, Paramount Network, Pop, TVLand and VH1. The show will also air in Spanish on UniMás. It will air from 9 pm on Wednesday 13 September on MTV in the UK.

AP/AP
Nominees for artist of the year for the MTV Video Music Awards, top row from left, Beyonce, Doja Cat, Karol G, bottom row from left, Nicki Minaj, Taylor Swift and Shakira.AP/AP

Swift leads the nominations with eight - seven for her “Anti-Hero” music video and a nod in the artist of the year category - followed by SZA, who has six.

Swift currently has 14 VMAs to her name, placing her behind Beyoncé, who has 28 (including two with Destiny’s Child), Madonna, who has 20 awards, and Lady Gaga, who has 19.

This year features 35 first-time nominees at 35, a record number. They include Kim Petras, Metro Boomin’ and Rema, who boast three nominations apiece.

Reneé Rapp, Aespa, Burna Boy, Davido, Eslabon Armado, FIFTY FIFTY, PinkPantheress, Saucy Santana, Stephen Sanchez and Toosii are also nominated for the first time.

Shakira will receive the Video Vanguard Award and is also expected to perform. Previous recipients of the accolade include Beyoncé, Nicki Minaj, Madonna, Janet Jackson, Jennifer Lopez, Rihanna, and Missy Elliott.

Diddy will receive the Global Icon Award and perform at the VMAs for the first time since 2005. He will become the third recipient of the prize, following the Red Hot Chili Peppers in 2022 and the Foo Fighters in 2021.

Other scheduled performers include Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion (performing their new collaboration, “Bongos”), Anitta, Demi Lovato, Fall Out Boy, Peso Pluma, Doja Cat, Karol G, Kelsea Ballerini, Måneskin, Olivia Rodrigo, Stray Kids, Tomorrow X Together and more.

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