Billboard Music Awards: Cher Accepts Icon Prize After Performing "Believe," "If I Could Turn Back Time"
Gwen Stefani presented her with the award.
Cher delivered a heartfelt speech after performing two of her biggest hits when she accepted the Icon award at the Billboard Music Awards.
The acclaimed singer received the prize, presented by Gwen Stefani, after performing "Believe" and "If I Could Turn Back Time." For the latter she wore an outfit reminiscent of the one from her video for the song.
Although viewers may have expected the outspoken critic of Donald Trump to go after the president, she refrained from mentioning him.
Instead, she delivered a heartfelt speech, thanking her mom and Sonny Bono for seeing something "special" in her.
"I've wanted to do what I do since I was four years old and I've been doing it for 53 years," she said, noting she'd turned 71 the day before. "I want to thank my mom because when I was young, my mom said, 'You're not going to be the smartest. You're not going to be the prettiest. You're not going to be the most talented. But you're going to be special.' And when I met Sonny, he said the same thing. And there was really nothing about me that led anyone to believe that I was going to be special."
She also recognized collaborators like Phil Spector, Diane Warren and David Geffen.
Cher has been a vocal critic of Trump's, calling him "a f—ing idiot" and reportedly saying before the election that if he won she'd have to "leave the planet."
Speaking with Billboard for its most recent cover story, Cher said the president "is cheating and getting away with it and using the White House to make money."
"He’s going to take health care away from people, and people are going die," she added. "It’s outrageous. You feel like you’re screaming ‘Fire!’ and no one’s listening."
This was the first time in more than 15 years that the Oscar winner and three-time Billboard Music Award winner performed at an awards show.
Presenting the award, Stefani called Cher someone who inspired her and "proved there's nothing she cannot do."
"She's a role model for showing us how to be strong and true to ourselves," Stefani said, calling Cher "a woman who is truly the definition of the word Icon."
Stefani also narrated a video of Cher's career history that played in between her two performances.
The Billboard Music Awards aired live at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT Sunday on ABC from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. Vanessa Hudgens and Ludacris hosted. Keep up with all the latest news here.