On Thursday night (March 11), Smith said they look forward to a time when awards shows “can be reflective of the society we live in.”
In the note, Smith wrote that the Brits have been an important part of their career since winning the Critics Choice prize in 2014.
“Music for me has always been about unification not division,” wrote Smith, who came out as non-binary in September 2019. “I look forward to a time where awards shows can be reflective of the society we live in. Let’s celebrate everybody, regardless of gender, race, age, ability, sexuality and class.”
The Brit Awards tell Billboard in a statement: “The Brits love Sam. Sam won our Critics’ Choice Award (now Rising Star) in 2014 and went on to enjoy incredible international stardom, winning more Brit Awards and nominations along the way as well as giving us some of the most memorable performances ever. Sam is an extraordinary British artist and we agree with what they have said today. The Brits are committed to evolving the show and the gendered categories are very much under review. But any changes made to be more inclusive need to be just that — if a change unintentionally leads to less inclusion then it risks being counter productive to diversity and equality. We need to consult more widely before changes are made to make sure we get it right.”
According to NME, the statement from Smith came after reports that the awards show plans to keep gender-based categories for this year’s event.
NME reported in 2019 that the Brits were reportedly planning to scrap their gendered categories in order to include non-binary artists, which came shortly after Smith revealed they were no longer using male pronouns.
With the exception of the just-revealed nominees for the rising star award (formerly known as critics choice), the full list of nominees for the 2021 edition have not yet been announced.
The changes were reportedly due to take place as of this year’s awards ceremony. The Brits, which typically take place in February, have been moved to May 11 due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Check out Smith’s tweet below.
— samsmith (@samsmith) March 12, 2021
Updated to include statement from the Brit Awards.