Laura leads the way as Irish turn on the style at Brit Awards
IRISH TV presenter Laura Whitmore once again wowed on the red carpet in London last night
Wearing a metallic rose-gold mini-dress by Zoe Jordan, Ms Whitmore (27) was busy backstage at the glamourous event in London’s O2 where she was recording footage for the live ITV airing of the programme.
The presenter, who accessorised her outfit with chunky gold jewellery and nude high heels, revealed photographs of her backstage, as she joked her dressing room was near that of the new Irish kid on the music scene Niall Horan.
One Direction star Horan - who was one of the acts along with Robbie Williams performing on the night - was spotted getting his picture snapped early in the night with Scottish singer Emeli Sande who was crowned queen of the Brits, collecting two of the biggest prizes as she declared: "This is a dream."
The 25-year-old singer was named best British female and carried off the key prize of the night when her debut release Our Version Of Events was named best album
Horan (19), from Mullingar, tweeted fans that he was “having a great time” backstage at the awards.
Picking up the Damien Hirst-designed trophy from US star Taylor Swift, she said: "This feels amazing. This is incredible and and I'm so happy to win this award."
The beaming star collected the prize a year after she won the Critics' Choice Award at the Brits, which kick-started her career.
Sande went on: "I don't really know what to say - thank you to everybody who's allowed me to make my music and allowed me to even be considered."
The singer, who was raised near Aberdeen, thanked her husband, Adam Gouragine, whom she married last summer.
The show opened with rock band Muse, who were backed by a 60-piece string section as they performed their track Supremacy.
Presenter James Corden made reference to last year's show in which he memorably cut off singer Adele as she collected her best album prize.
He pointed out that Swift had once been cut off mid-speech but there was no chance of such an occurrence tonight. "Not on my watch," he joked.
Mumford & Sons picked up the award for best British group, two years after missing out on the prize when they were previously shortlisted.
It was the band's second Brit win, having collected the best album prize in 2011.
Frontman Marcus Mumford said: "Thanks very much indeed. We weren't expecting that. I don't think we've really taken the opportunity to thank people who have come to our gigs.
"We were in a group with Muse and One Direction, so it's a surprise."
The best British breakthrough prize went to Ben Howard, who was last year nominated for the Mercury Music Prize.
Collecting the prize from Radio 1 breakfast show host Nick Grimshaw, Howard said: "I'm not very good at speeches. I'm not very good at dancing."
And thanking his mother, he said: "She's rung a lot of old friends to ask them to vote for this."
Ceremony host Corden chatted to members of heartthrob boy band One Direction between performances and teased singer Harry Styles about his reputation for being drawn to older women.
"We've got Sharon Osbourne and Annie Lennox here tonight - who've you got your eye on?" Corden asked.
Robbie Williams, who has landed more Brits than any other artist after collecting 17 as a solo star and member of Take That, was also among performers as he sang his hit Candy.
Howard went on to collect his second prize of the night by taking the best male solo artist award, beating artists such as Olly Murs, Calvin Harris and Richard Hawley.
The singer, who looked taken aback by his second win, said: "This is bizarre, isn't it? I didn't really expect it. I'm quite stoked to even come to the awards, so to come away with two of these is amazing."
Critics' Choice winner Tom Odell was in the audience after picking up his award earlier in the year. "It's crazy to be here," he said.
The evening also featured a much-anticipated performance by Justin Timberlake, who is rejuvenating his musical career after a spell in which he devoted his time to acting. The US hunk, wearing a shiny elegant suit, showcased his new track Mirrors.
Sharon Osbourne lowered the tone a little with a smutty joke about Styles as she prepared to present the best international female prize.
"Where is that little Harry Potter - has he got his magic stick with him?" she asked. "That's his willy," she added.
Lana Del Rey took the international female award, thanking her record label Polydor for its help in "turning my life into art".
She went on: "Thank you so much. I live here and I love it and I wrote my record here."
Styles and his boy band played an energetic version of their Comic Relief single One Way Or Another/Teenage Kicks to screaming members of the audience, dancing on a giant pinball machine.
Coldplay were declared best live act, beating the likes of Muse, Mumford & Sons and the Rolling Stones.
Only drummer Will Champion and guitarist Jonny Buckland from the quartet were at the event to collect the prize. Champion thanked fans who had been to see their live shows.
Adele collected the best single prize for her James Bond theme Skyfall - and joked about how she was cut off in her prime at last year's ceremony when the show began to overrun.
In a video acceptance, she said: "Hello everyone - thank you for this Brit Award. Sorry I can't be with you tonight. I'm in LA rehearsing for the Oscars. I won't keep you too long because I don't want to interrupt the best album speech at the end of the night.
"I love you all, thank you so much. I can't wait to come back and see you all. I'm not living here by the way, just in case any of you think that."
Taylor Swift performed her track I Knew You Were Trouble, wearing a long wedding-style gown, which she whipped off to reveal a black lace mini-dress.
US duo Black Keys took the best international group prize, with Foo Fighters star Dave Grohl presenting the award and collecting it on their behalf as they were not able to attend.