The Latin Grammys were phenomenal! Last night the 18th annual Latin Grammy Awards took place in Las Vegas, Nevada, where politics dominated the night. But it wasn’t just politics that was addressed but peoples lives. While there were many incredible winners, some of those that took home awards couldn’t help but speak of the main issues at hand.
Puerto Rican artists such as Lin-Manuel Miranda, Residente, and Luis Fonsi, all won major awards, and all of them dedicated their win to their native island of Puerto Rico.
“This song is a hymn to Puerto Rico,” Fonsi said backstage, the Associated Press reports. “Everything I do, and everything I will do, now more than ever, is to continue celebrating my island, my culture, my homeland and my music, and to make sure the public knows that Puerto Rico needs help.”
The show began with a moment of silence for Puerto Rico and included a performance by Residente who had a shirt with the Puerto Rican flag and performed “Hijos del Canaveral” (“Sons of Canaveral”). That evening Residente took home awards for Best Urban Album and Best Urban Song.
Alejandro Sanz was recognized as the Latin Recording Academy’s 2017 Person of the Year, but Sanz didn’t speak of his career but rather the Clean Dream Act.
“This is their country, in the end,” Sanz said, according to the Associated Press. “These are the kids who will have the courage to say a border is not going to stop me. That’s why I say that for every stone that’s placed or every wall that’s built, there will always be a call behind it to take it down.”
Sanz was joined by a group of undocumented immigrants all bearing the words “We Have One Dream” on their shirts.
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@alejandrosanz "Uno se pasa media vida construyendo muros, y otra media vida intentando tirar los muros" Tremenda foto de @alejandrosanz con estas personas que se atreven a soñar! #orgullo #amor #AlejandroSanzPersonOftheYear2017 #alejandrosanz #latingrammy #personadelaño #fams
— Lin-Manuel Miranda (@Lin_Manuel) November 17, 2017
Lin-Manuel Miranda won the President’s Merit Award for his artistic and philanthropic work and dedicated his award to Puerto Ricans. He gave his speech in English and Spanish and described himself as the “weird theater kid here (with the half-gringo accent).” He also said that the U.S. government must remember that the people of Puerto Rico are “are human beings, too.”