Ariana Grande appeared emotional as she won the Best Pop prize at the MTV Video Music Awards in New York.
She won for No Tears Left To Cry - her first single after a suicide bomber killed 22 people at her concert in Manchester in May last year.
Accepting the award, the 25-year-old pop star thanked her family, fans and fiance Pete Davidson, who was seated in the audience.
She told him: "Thank you for existing".
The pair publicly displayed their affection in a number of embraces on the red carpet before the show.
Cardi B opened the ceremony but disappointed fans on two fronts - one because she didn't perform, and two because she teased viewers by cradling what appeared to be a baby in a blanket, which in fact was a VMA Moonman award.
The new mother, who led the way in nominations with 10, welcomed daughter Kulture in July, her first child with Migos rapper boyfriend Offset.
Jennifer Lopez stunned viewers as she performed a medley of her hits, including Jenny From The Block, Love Don't Cost A Thing, and All I Have.
Her boyfriend Alex Rodriguez looked impressed as he held up his phone and recorded her peformance.
The 49-year-old was awarded the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award at the VMAs.
She received a standing ovation as she accepted the prize in her home town of New York.
"I grew up on MTV," she said.
"This is a tremendous honour for me. It's been an incredible journey of dreaming my wildest dreams when watching them come true. Music, acting, performing, this career has always been kind of an obsession for me."
Madonna paid tribute to Aretha Franklin, describing her as "one of the greatest soul singers that ever lived".
But the star, who recently celebrated her 60th birthday, may have got the tone wrong as her tribute was not well received.
She said she was living in Detroit with "35 dollars in my pocket" and was repeatedly being rejected from auditions for "not being pretty enough".
Then, during an audition as a backing dancer for a French disco performer, she decided to sing Franklin's (You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman.
This led to her going to Paris and acted as a launchpad for her career, she said.
Viewers accused her of making the tribute about herself.
Here is a list of they key winners from the night:
- Video of the year - Camila Cabello, Havana
- Video with a message - This Is America, Childish Gambino
- Artist of the year - Camila Cabello
- Song of the year - Rockstar by Post Malone
- Push artist of the year - Hayley Kiyoko
- Best pop - No Tears Left To Cry by Ariana Grande
- Best hip hop - Chun-Li by Nicki Minaj
- Best Latin - Mi Gente by J Balvin and Willy William
- Song of summer - I Like It by Cardi B, Bad Bunny & J Balvin
- Best new artist - Cardi B
- Best collaboration - Jennifer Lopez ft DJ Khaled and Cardi B, Dinero