Superstar Anitta has just made history as the first Brazilian artist to take home a Video Music Award. The singer electrified the stage with a performance of “Envolver” minutes before winning the “Best Latin Song” category for the same song, notably beating Bad Bunny, Karol G and J Balvin.
“I really didn’t expect that, I think I’m going to cry,” said the singer when accepting the award. “For those who don’t know this: tonight in history is the first time that Brazil, that my country has won this award. I want to thank my family and my fans.”
It’s a fitting achievement for an artist who has already been widely dubbed Brazil’s queen of pop despite only being discovered on YouTube just a decade ago. The 29-year-old broke into the major US charts in earnest in 2017 after collaborating with Iggy Azalea on “Switch” and releasing “Sua Cara” with Major Lazer and drag queen Pablo Vittar.
In her speech, Anitta made reference to her upbringing in the favelas of Rio de Janeiro. “Tonight I presented here a rhythm that in my country for many years was considered a crime,” she said. “I was born and raised in the ghetto of Brazil. For whoever was born there, we would never think that this was possible. So thank you very much.”
Check out Anitta’s performance of “Envolver” below.