Trans Singer Kim Petras Gets Standing Ovation at Grammys

Kim Petras accepts the Best Pop Duo/Group Performance award for “Unholy” onstage durin
Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

Transgender pop singer Kim Petras received a standing ovation at 2023 Grammy Awards on Sunday night.

“Sam [Smith] graciously wanted me to accept this award, because I’m the first transgender woman to win this award,” the transgender singer said during an acceptance speech after Petras and Smith won best pop duo/group performance for their song “Unholy.”

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“And I just want to thank all the incredible transgender legends before me who kicked these doors open for me so I could be here tonight,” Petras added.

The singer went on to thank a deceased friend named “Sophie” — likely referring to transgender musician Sophie Xeon, who died in January 2021 at the age of 34, after falling from a balcony in Athens, Greece.

“Sophie, especially, my friend who passed away two years ago, who told me this would happen and always believed in me,” Petras said. “Thank you so much for your inspiration, Sophie, I adore you, and your inspiration will forever be in my music.”

Petras also thanked “Madonna, for fighting for LGBTQ rights,” adding, “I don’t think I could be here without Madonna.”

“My mother,” the singer continued. “I grew up next to a highway in Nowhere, Germany, and my mother believed me that I was a girl. And I wouldn’t be here without her and her support.”

Sam Smith, the other artist on the award-winning song, identifies as “nonbinary” and only allows others to use “they/them” pronouns to describe him.

Petras was not the only transgender entertainer making waves at the 2023 Grammys.

Activist Dylan Mulvaney, a TikTok star famous for his vlogs chronicling his “girlhood” day by day, merely imitating paternalistic stereotypes about women, was also seen clad in a dress on the Grammy Awards red carpet, striking poses in front of photographers.

You can follow Alana Mastrangelo on Facebook and Twitter at @ARmastrangelo, and on Instagram.


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