Britain’s leading music prize ceremony is being used as a pilot event by the government ahead of the expected full easing of coronavirus restrictions this summer.
Swift will be the first woman to win the award, and according to People magazine, the youngest and first non-English artist to take the award home.
Past winners of the award include the likes of Elton John and David Bowie.
Swift, who is also nominated in the international female solo artist category, is the biggest selling artist in the U.K. so far in 2021 following the release of her re-recorded album “Fearless.”
“I want to thank the BRITs or anyone who decided that I would be worthy of this incredible honor,” the singer said in her acceptance speech. “I’m really, really proud to be a part of this music community, especially in a year when we all needed music so much.”
She continued: “If there’s one thing that I’ve learned, it’s that you have to look around you every day and take note of the people who have always believed in you and never stop appreciating them for it, never take them for granted.”
Like many award programs, the BRITs have been criticized recently for a lack of diversity in those recognized.
In 2017, the academy of more than 1,000 music industry professionals that chooses the winners was expanded in an attempt to make it more gender-balanced and diverse.
Taylor Swift has received the BRIT global icon award. (Photo by Aaron J. Thornton/Getty Images)
Nonetheless, last year the show was criticized for failing to recognize women, with no female performers included on the shortlist for album of the year. This year, that category includes four female acts: Arlo Parks, Celeste, Dua Lipa and Jessie Ware. J Hus is the only male performer nominated.
The show will serve as part of the government’s Events Research Program, which has recently seen crowds return to soccer matches, an outdoor gig and a nightclub.
Those who attend will also be tested and monitored after the event as part of the research.
Attendees will not be socially distanced or wearing face masks, but they will have had to provide a negative COVID-19 test ahead of the show.
The Associated Press contributed to this report