Mary J Blige was the undisputed Queen at the Billboard Music Awards held in Las Vegas last night.

The R&B legend bagged nine awards, including the coveted Hot 100 airplay song of the year and accolades for the single BE WITHOUT YOU and her album THE BREAKTHROUGH.

A thrilled BLIGE told Billboard backstage: "I've never received this many awards at any time in my career, ever."

Other big winners on the night included country singer CARRIE UNDERWOOD and rapper T.I. who picked up five gongs each.

Accepting the award for female artist of the year, 18-year-old R&B star Rihanna said: "I really can't feel my legs! This is phenomenal."

Rock outfit Nickelback picked up three awards, including group of the year and for the best rock album.

Stevie Wonder presented the Billboard Century Award to 80-year-old jazz veteran Tony Bennett.

Janet Jackson, the Black Eyed Peas, Ludacris and PHARRELL all performed at the ceremony, which was held at the MGM Grand Arena and broadcast live on Fox.

Gwen Stefani, whose second debut album THE SWEET ESCAPE was released yesterday, entertained the crowds with the single WIND IT UP.

05/12/2006 10:47:14