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Swift's LGBT anthem kicks off MTV awards

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Taylor Swift arriving on the red carpet at the 2019 MTV Video Music Awards held at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey on August 26, 2019. (Photo by Anthony Behar/Sipa USA).

 

Taylor Swift has given the curtain raising performance at the MTV Video Music Awards, being held in New Jersey, with her ode to LGBT rights

During a performance of her single You Need To Calm Down from newly released album Lover, the words "equality act" flashed up on the screen behind her.

The proposed US legislation would grant protections to the LGBT community by adding sexual orientation and gender identity as outlawed forms of discrimination.

Swift first backed the law earlier this year.

The pop superstar took to the stage beneath a rainbow, wearing blue shorts and a silver top and surrounded by male and female backing dancers.

Swift is tied with Ariana Grande as the most nominated act at the VMAs - they each have 10 nominations.

This year's VMAs are hosted by comedian Sebastian Maniscalco and take place in New Jersey for the first time.

The first award of the night, best hip hop, went to Cardi B for Money. The rapper, wearing a revealing red outfit, waved the Moon Trophy around while fans chanted her name.

The annual ceremony, established in 1984 as a more youth-focused alternative to the Grammys, has earned a reputation for playing host to controversial moments, rather than who wins the prizes.

© PAA 2019