Leeds: ‘The MOBOs are such a special night for city’

Labrinth poses for selfies with the fans. PIC: Tony Johnson
Labrinth poses for selfies with the fans. PIC: Tony Johnson
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Glitz and glamour from the world of showbusiness took Leeds by storm as the city played host to the MOBO Awards 2015.

The First Direct Arena was lit up with performances from a range of stars, including Rita Ora, CeeLo Green and FKA Twigs in front of a crowd of around 10,000.

Lianne La Havas. PIC: Tony Johnson

Lianne La Havas. PIC: Tony Johnson

The biggest winners of the night were grime artist Stormzy and hip-hop act Krept & Konan at a ceremony Leeds City Council leader Judith Blake said showed what the city was capable of.

She said: “It’s been a very special night for the city and once again we’ve risen to the challenge of hosting a major, world class event and shown the world what a fantastic and vibrant place Leeds is.

“The awards have been a terrific celebration of music and diversity that have showcased the very best of Leeds to the thousands here tonight and a global audience of millions.

“Tonight has also laid down a huge marker for our ambition to be named European Capital of Culture 2023.”

Stormzy took home both the best male and best grime artist award, while Krept & Konan picked up best hip-hop act and best album for The Long Way Home, emerging as the only two candidates to claim victory in more than one category.

Best female was taken by Ella Eyre, who also performed at the ceremony, and best newcomer was picked up by Section Boyz.

The awards, which celebrate music of black origin played by people of any ethnicity or nationally, also recognised actor comedian Sir Lenny Henry as well as musician Wiley in the category paving the way.

Soul singer CeeLo Green was also given a special award for outstanding achievement in music.

The award for best African act was taken by Fuse ODG and the best song was Shutdown by Skepta.

Alternative R&B artists FKA Twigs, who shot to fame last year with her leftfield take on the genre, claimed the best music video award for Pendulum.

The best reggae, jazz, R&B/soul and gospel awards were collected by Popcaan, Binker & Moses, Shakka and Faith Child.

Focusing heavily on British artists, the award for best international album was handed to Canadian superstar Drake.

Experts have said the awards were worth around £1.35m to the local economy.

The ceremony, celebrating its 20th anniversary, was broadcast live on ITV2.