Pink accepted the Icon Award in a massive way during the 2023 iHeartRadio Music Awards ceremony on Monday. The singer celebrated the distinction onstage by duetting with Kelly Clarkson, before accepting the award from her fellow powerhouse vocalist, and highlighting the power of being vulnerable.
“I usually do try to joke or be self-deprecating in these moments, but I want to be a better friend to myself tonight. I would like to try and say something honest. Every room I walk into, my heart walks in first. Every lyric that I write is my heart crying, raging, hoping, screaming, pleading,” she said. “You have watched me do this: Sifting through life’s messiness for almost 25 years. And some of you find what I do annoying and some of you find it brave and I just find it necessary.”
“As human beings, we are vulnerable from the time we are born until the time we die and most of us spend our entire lives running from that. Vulnerability means the ability to be wounded. I have decided to make vulnerability my life’s work and for those of you around the world that have joined me on this adventure, I thank you from the bottom of my heart,” she added. “I’m grateful to be alive. I’m grateful that I get to do this with my one precious life. Most of all, Willow and Jameson, I’m grateful to be your momma.”
Prior to accepting the award, legends Pat Benatar and Neil Giraldo took the stage for a rendition of Pink’s song “Like a Pill.” Clarkson also took the stage to sing her track “Just Give Me a Reason” before being joined by Pink herself for a powerful duet.
“It has been said that miracles are often associated with icons. Kelly Clarkson singing with me and Pat Benatar singing one of my songs…” she said. “Two of the greatest voices alive, being on stage doing what I love with people that I love with all my heart, and with my babies in the audience. This feels like a Christmas miracle.”
Pink closed off the performance by singing an EDM mashup of her songs “What About Us” and “Who Knew.”
Earlier in the night, Pink helped open the awards show with a trampoline-bouncing performance of her album Trustfall‘s title track. She attended the event with her children Willow Sage and Jameson Moon.
Pink joins a cohort of A-list musicians to earn the honor. Bon Jovi was the first recipient in 2018, Elton John accepted it in 2021, and Jennifer Lopez took home the award last year.
This is Pink’s first-ever iHeartRadio Music Awards distinction after being nominated for Female Artist of the Year in 2018, Best Song From a Movie for “Just Like Fire” in 2017, and “A Million Dreams” for Best Cover Song in 2019.
The new trophy comes about a month after she released her album Trustfall, marking her ninth studio record. “She uses the overarching idea of ‘pop’ as a way for her to apply her raspy, strong voice to other genres, while lyrically, her words, which don’t shy away from irascibility or eye-rolling, feel like they’re coming from a genuine place, even when they’re penned by other writers,” a Rolling Stone review stated of the new album.
Hosted by Lenny Kravitz, the iHeartRadio Music Awards are airing live on Fox. Taylor Swift also received a major award on Monday as the recipient of the award show’s Innovator prize. Hitting the stage with performances are the likes of Cody Johnson, Coldplay, Latto, Muni Long, and Keith Urban.