NEW YORK -- Host Comedian Kevin Hart kept the crowd laughing out loud during last night's BET AWARDS '11 opening act with Bobby Brown , Jermaine Dupri , Anthony Anderson , Nelly, and Nick Cannon.
Legendary songstress and diva extraordinaire Patti LaBelle was the recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award. Beginning with a special introduction from another musical icon, Gladys Knight , Cee Lo Green took to the stage in a throwback Patti LaBelle costume performing "Somebody Loves You Baby," while Marsha Ambrosius jazzed up the room with a rendition of "If Only You Knew," before Shirley Caesar took the crowd—and Patti LaBelle —to tears singing "You Are My Friend." But it was Patti herself that brought the house down performing two of her greatest hits, "Love, Need and Want You" and "Lady Marmalade."
Steve Harvey was given the Humanitarian Award.
The cast of the Five Heartbeats movie surprised the audience with a reunited performance with R&B crooners After 7 with the famous hit, "Nights Like This," for the 20-year anniversary of the film.
Kerry Washington graced the stage for BET's Shine A Light moment to honor individuals who make the world a better place for young people.
Celebrating the 10-year Anniversary of her first album, Songs In A Minor , Alicia Keys graced the BET AWARDS '11stage for a medley of her hits with Bruno Mars and Rick Ross as well as for the world premiere her latest song, "Typewriter."
In all. there were 14 performances from Trey Songz, Kelly Rowland, Donnie McClurkin, Deitrick Haddon, Mary Mary, Mary J. Blige, Anita Baker, DJ Khaled, Jadakiss, Jill Scott, DJ Idris Elba, DJ Khaled, Rick Ross, Drake and Lil' Wayne.
This year's In Memoriam tribute celebrated the lives of Cali Swag District member M-Bone , Clarence Clemons , Teena Marie , Gil Scott Heron and Nate Dogg with performances and appearances by Doug E. Fresh and Cali Swag District, Queen Latifah, Ledisi, Scott Mayo, Snoop Dogg and Warren G.
In continuing BET's S.O.S.: Saving Ourselves initiative, the eveining contained a special moment to show support for the victims of the tornadoes in the Southeast through a special message from Rev. Al Sharpton.
All of this year's winners are listed below:
• Best Female R& Artist: Rihanna
• Best Male R& Artist: Chris Brown
• Best Group: Diddy-Dirty Money
• Best Gospel Artist: Mary Mary
• Best Female Hip Hop Artist: Nicki Minaj
• Best Male Hip Hop Artist: Kanye West
• Best New Artist: Wiz Khalifa
• Best Collaboration: Chris Brown f/ Lil Wayne and Busta Rhymes "Look At Me Now"
• Video of the Year: Chris Brown f/ Lil Wayne and Busta Rhymes "Look At Me Now"
• Video Director of the Year: Chris Robinson
• Best Actress: Taraji P. Henson
• Best Actor: Idris Elba
• Young Stars Award: Jaden Smith and Willow Smith
• Best Movie: For Colored Girls
• Subway Sportswoman of the Year: Serena Williams
• Subway Sportsman of the Year: Michael Vick
• Centric Award: Marsha Ambrosius "Far Away"
• Best International Act: 2Face Idibia (Nigeria) and D'Banj (Nigeria)
• Coca-Cola Viewer's Choice Award: Chris Brown f/ Lil Wayne & Busta Rhymes - "Look at me Now"
• Humanitarian Award: Steve Harvey
• Lifetime Achievement Award: Patti LaBelle