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BET Awards 2010: Emotional Michael Jackson Tribute From Chris Brown

Incredible Performances From US Stars Marking 1st Year Anniversary Of The King Of Pops Death

He's found himself at the receiving end of a wave of vitriol since the incident which resulted in an assault on his ex-girlfriend Rihanna.

So R&B star Chris Brown has understandably been under a huge amount of pressure in the months that have passed since the attack.

And the 21-year-old appeared to have a cathartic moment during a tribute to his idol Michael Jackson at this year's star-studded BET (Black Entertainment Television) Awards held at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles.

At the close of the tribute, which saw Brown dance to Remember the Time, Smooth Criminal and Billie Jean, Brown attempted to sing Man In The Mirror.

However, he could hardly utter a word as he choked back tears and pranced around on stage, raising his fist to the emotional number before collapsing to his knees - still attempting to get the words of the song out of his mouth.

The audience managed to fill in the gaps as Brown struggled with the song, their help seeming to spurn him to rise from his knees and mouth the words along with Jackson's voice, while gesturing along with the mic as tears rolled down his face.

Finally, as the song closed, Brown walked offstage where he was consoled by Jermaine Jackson.

His surprise addition to the show's line-up came a year after Brown was forced to bow out of plans to take part in the Michael Jackson memorial concert following his highly-publicised bust-up with ex-girlfriend Rihanna.

So, Brown's BET performance was no doubt a long-awaited opportunity to pay tribute to his idol.

Later in the show he admitted he'd disappointed himself at losing control of his emotions during the routine.

Collecting the AOL Fandemonium award (voted for by online fans) he said: 'I let ya'll down before, but I won't do it again. I promise.'

And his emotional performance was well received by his peers.

Hustle And Flow actress Taraji P. Henson, who mouthed her support for Chris as he exited the stage, commented: 'He was so vulnerable. I love you Chris!'

While the winner in the Best Male R&B Artist category, Trey Songz, said: 'Chris killed that. He left his heart on the stage. He gave genuine emotion.

'I was proud of him and I was happy for him for having that moment. He did that justice. Everybody's been waiting for that.'

BET publicist Zabrina Horton said. 'Me, personally, I think 'Man in the Mirror' was great for him to do because I'm sure he still feels bad about Rihanna and wants to be forgiven. He has to make that change himself for himself and he knows that.'

Fans voted online to give Brown his award ahead of Nicki Minaj, Trey Songz and Justin Bieber.

The BET Awards are held annually and celebrate the achievements of African Americans and other minorities in music, sport and acting among other forms of entertainment.

British lyricist Dizzee Rascal was honoured with Best International Act, ahead of ten other top international artists including fellow Brits Chipmunk and Estelle.

Eminem performed his new song Not Afraid, following an appearance on Keyshia Cole's Airplane. He left the stage to a standing ovation from the appreciative crowd.

It was also a big night for Kanye West, who kicked off the 10th annual ceremony with a defiant performance of his new song Power, managing to behave himself during his first major televised appearance since storming the stage at the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards.

Meanwhile, Alicia Keys, Janelle Monae, Patti LaBelle and Esmeralda Spalding all took part in a musical tribute to Prince.

Monae sang 1984 hit Let's Go Crazy, from the Purple Rain soundtrack, Spalding took on If I Was Your Girlfriend, Keys performed Adore and Patti LaBelle sang Purple Rain.

Prince was welcomed to the stage with a standing ovation as he collected the Lifetime Achievement Award, thanking his fans for their long-running support as he hailed the promising new talent in the music industry.

He said: 'I do believe the future is in good hands. I've seen so much talent here tonight.. and I'm just so thankful to be a part of this world of music.

'I was pretty wild in my younger days and you don't have to do what I did; you don't have to make any of the mistakes that I made. The future is in your hands now, the world is really yours.'

A large cast of assorted stars from the world of music and film were at the event including the likes of Drake, Usher, Travis Barker, Eminem, Kanye West, the Black Eyed Peas, P Diddy, Alicia Keys, Prince, Jada Pinkett Smith, Tyrese Gibson, John Legend and Queen Latifah.

A notable absence was Usher's protege Justin Bieber, The teen sensation failed to attend the event despite picking up a nomination for Best New Artist.

He later tweeted: 'Just wanted to say I would have been at the awards but this show was booked before the nominees came out, and I don't cancel shows.

'I would never cancel a show and let down the fans unless I had to, but I do wish I was there too, because I am honoured to just be nominated.'

'Why did we not plan for the BET Awards? Well, to be honest people, not many of us thought the white boy from Canada was gonna be nominated.

'But it just goes to show that music is colour blind! It is the Universal Language and good music brings us all together, the way it should be.

'So thank you to BET, I'm honoured and grateful and let's keep enjoying this music together, thanks.'

Other winners on the night included Lil Wayne's protege Nicki Minaj, who took Best Female Hip-Hop artist, Alicia Keys who took Best Album and Single and Drake, who took Best Male Hip-Hop.

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