Watch Janet Jackson's surprise appearance at the Billboard Music Awards

Janet Jackson made a surprise appearance at the Billboard Music Awards to honour Mary J. Blige.

The pop legend took to the stage at the MGM Grand Arena in Las Vegas to present fellow singer Mary with the Icon Award.

After stepping into the spotlight, rarely-seen star Janet was treated to a standing ovation from the adoring crowd.

She then turned her attention to Mary and gave a touching speech in tribute to the 'Family Affair' hitmaker.

Janet said: "Mary J. Blige represents truth. Her work has always given us comfort because she sings me, she sings you ...

“Her work has always given us comfort because she sings me, she sings you."

Janet then went on to reference one of Mary's most famous songs, 'No More Drama', saying: "I reminisce, but I''m not going to cry because even though sometime sit feels like everyday it rains, I’ve got no more drama.

"I’m just fine with my life, my life, my life, my life in the sunshine."

Mary then fought back tears as she thanked Janet and gave an emotional speech with nods to her family and friends.

She said: "What an icon means to me is overcoming obstacles to accomplish the unthinkable and be widely admired for having influence over a multitude of people, and that is what I’ve always represented."

Mary then joked: "I was ghetto fabulous, and I still am ... So ghetto, so fabulous, and people were threatened by that."

The singer went on to say: "The message in my music has always been that we are not alone in our struggles. And I’m not alone now. For so long, I was searching for a real love, but I finally found my real love. And that real love is me.”

She concluded her speech by thanking her fans, saying: "I’m so grateful to have you".

Elsewhere, Olivia Rodrigo and Kanye West were the big winners at the 2022 Billboard Music Awards.

This year half of the winners were unveiled on TikTok and the other half during a live broadcast on Peacock and NBC in the US.

Teenage pop superstar Olivia, 19, and rap legend Kanye, 44, took home the most prizes.

Olivia won seven accolades for Top New Artist, Top 100 Artist, Top Streaming Songs Artist, Top Radio Songs Artist, Top Billboard Global 200 Artist and Top R&B Female Artist, while 'SOUR' was crowned Top Billboard 200 Album.

As for Kanye, the 'Jesus Walks' rapper dominated the gospel and Christian categories, with 'Donda' taking home both Top Christian and Top Gospel Album. He also named Top Christian and Gospel Artist, while 'Hurricane' from 'Donda' was named Top Christian and Gospel Song, giving him a total of six prizes.

Korean group BTS - who did not attend this year's awards in person - took home three awards: Top Duo/Group, Top Song Sales Artist and Top Selling Song for their hit single 'Butter'.

Their win makes the act the most awarded group in Billboard Music Award history with 12 awards total, breaking Destiny’s Child’s 17-year record of 11 awards.

Doja Cat walked away with three prizes for Top R&B Artist, Top Viral Song for 'Kiss Me More' with SZA and Top R&B Female Artist.

The Weeknd was the most-nominated going into the ceremony, with 17 nods, but the 'Blinding Lights' hitmaker only walked away with a single prize for Top R&B Male Artist.

The star-studded bash was hosted by Diddy and featured performances from Megan Thee Stallion, Silk Sonic, Burna Boy, Florence + The Machine, Ed Sheeran and Machine Gun Kelly.

An abridged list of the 2022 Billboard Music Awards winners:

Top Artist

Drake

Top New Artist

Olivia Rodrigo

Top Male Artist

Drake

Top Female Artist

Olivia Rodrigo

Top Duo/Group

BTS

Top Billboard 200 Artist

Taylor Swift

Top Hot 100 Artist

Olivia Rodrigo

Top Streaming Songs Artist

Olivia Rodrigo

Top Song Sales Artist

BTS

Top Radio Songs Artist

Olivia Rodrigo

Top Billboard Global 200 Artist

Olivia Rodrigo

Top Billboard Global (Excl. U.S.) Artist

Ed Sheeran

Top Tour

The Rolling Stones ('No Filter Tour')

Top R&B Artist

Doja Cat

Top R&B Male Artist

The Weeknd

Top R&B Female Artist

Doja Cat

Top Rap Artist

Drake

Top Rap Male Artist

Drake

Top Rap Female Artist

Megan Thee Stallion

Top Country Artist

Taylor Swift

Top Country Male Artist

Morgan Wallen

Top Country Female Artist

Taylor Swift

Top Country Duo/Group

Dan + Shay

Top Rock Artist

Glass Animals

Top Rock Tour

The Rolling Stones ('No Filter Tour')

Top Latin Artist

Bad Bunny

Top Latin Male Artist

Bad Bunny

Top Latin Female Artist

Kali Uchis

Top Dance/Electronic Artist

Lady Gaga

Top Christian Artist

Ye

Top Gospel Artist

Ye

Top Billboard 200 Album

Olivia Rodrigo, ‘SOUR’

Top Rap Album

Drake, ‘Certified Lover Boy’

Top Country Album

Taylor Swift, ‘Red (Taylor’s Version)’

Top Rock Album

twenty one pilots, ‘Scaled and Icy’

Top Latin Album

Karol G, ‘KG0516’

Top Dance/Electronic Album

Illenium, ‘Fallen Embers’

Top Christian Album

Ye, ‘Donda’

Top Gospel Album

Ye, ‘Donda’

Top Hot 100 Song

The Kid LAROI & Justin Bieber, ‘Stay’

Top Streaming Song

The Kid LAROI & Justin Bieber, ‘Stay’

Top Selling Song

BTS, ‘Butter’

Top Radio Song

Dua Lipa, ‘Levitating’

Top Collaboration

The Kid LAROI & Justin Bieber, ‘Stay’

Top Billboard Global 200 Song

The Kid LAROI & Justin Bieber, ‘Stay’

Top Billboard Global (Excl. U.S.) Song

The Kid LAROI & Justin Bieber, ‘Stay’

Top Viral Song

Doja Cat ft. SZA, ‘Kiss Me More’

Top R&B Song

Silk Sonic (Bruno Mars, Anderson .Paak), ‘Leave The Door Open’

Top Rap Song

Lil Nas X ft. Jack Harlow, ‘Industry Baby’

Top Rock Song

Måneskin, ‘Beggin''

Top Latin Song

Kali Uchis, ‘telepatía’

Top Dance/Electronic Song

Sir Elton John & Dua Lipa, ‘Cold Heart – PNAU Remix’

Top Christian Song

Ye, ‘Hurricane’ – winner

Top Gospel Song

Ye, ‘Hurricane’

- Bang! Showbiz