MTV EMAs to honour Whitney Houston with Icon Award

The singer will be given the posthumous award which was introduced in 2010


The MTV European Music Awards, the awards show that aims to reach beyond musical borders, is going even further than that on Sunday, giving its Global Icon award to the late Whitney Houston, it was announced at a pre-show press conference in the host city, Frankfurt, on Saturday.

The US singer, who died of a drug overdose in February this year, on the eve of the Grammy Awards, will be given the posthumous award which was introduced to the EMAs in 2010. “Each year we look for a huge global artist that we feel has had an elevated profile that year,” said Bruce Gilmer, executive producer of the EMAs. “The acts have to have a substantial career — we look at over a decade as a benchmark. Her influence past and present is massive. We all know Whitney lives on,” Gilmer added, hinting that there will be a special presentation in this category on Sunday night.

The highlight of the press conference, held at Frankfurt’s historic city hall, the Romer, in an ancient and beautiful room where German emperors had been elected for centuries, was hometown girl Heidi Klum. So much so that the Project Runway presenter had barely ascended the stage before Frankfurt mayor Peter Feldmann, sitting in the front row, jumped up to greet her publicly. Following in the footsteps of previous hosts Eva Longoria and Katy Perry, Klum expressed some nerves about compering the massive live awards show.

“It is frightening because it is aired in 120 countries. I’m just the tie that links the show together.”

Fans of Project Runway will be glad to hear she’s completely unscripted on that show.

“When I host Project Runway there is no teleprompter — I just speak what comes to my mind and to me that’s easier.”

Klum revealed she’s going to be attempting to give Perry a run for her money, with six Versace-designed costume changes during the show — although she wasn’t promising anything.

“It depends how much time I have.”

She’s a big Psy fan — the Korean is nominated in the best video category and will be performing at the show — saying she and her three children like to dance to Gangnam Style at home. “We have a disco ball and we make the room dark and we dance,” she said, but her daughter Leni’s favourite is Carly Rae Jepsen, and she’ll be getting an autograph.

That shouldn’t be too difficult as Jepsen was also at the press conference, along with her fellow Best New and Best Push nominees fun., who say they’ve already identified the Best New winners: One Direction. “They swept the VMAs. I think we’re going to lose,” said fun.’s guitarist Jack Antonoff, who was joined by drummer Andrew Dost. “They’re going to crush us.”

EMAs veteran Ludacris will be premiering his new video, which features David Guetta and Usher, a collaboration he said was made possible by last year’s EMAs in Dublin, where he met Guetta. “I had to make sure I had a project for this year.” He had flown into rainy Frankfurt from London, where he’s filming the sixth instalment of the Fast and Furious franchise. But his real reason for coming back this year? “I have a crush on Heidi, so I had to get a job here.”

*tabloid! is reporting live from the red carpet and show of the MTV EMAs 2012. Follow us on Twitter @GulfNewsTabloid