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American Music Awards 2013’s Biggest Winners and Losers

From Gaga to Taylor, who really came out on top

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The duo's performance of killer Artpop collabo "Do What U Want" on SNL last week was lackluster and messy, and even R. Kelly knew it ("No offense to Saturday Night Live but that was a dress rehearsal for AMAs," he told Rolling Stone on the red carpet). But the pair brought a hilariously over-the-top bit set in the oval office to the AMAs that smacked of Kelly's beloved hip-hopera "Trapped in the Closet." Kelly was smooth, Gaga was on point, and though the performance strayed a bit from its original concept toward the end (Gaga plastered the set with self-deprecating headlines), it was one of the night's strongest performances.

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WINNER: Taylor Swift

Taylor Swift was the night's big winner purely by the numbers (she picked up four awards, more than any other artist), but her final acceptance speech — for Artist of the Year — struck the perfect earnest tone. "My lucky number is 13, and so far you guys have made 2013 the most magical year of my life so far," she said. "I cannot thank you enough. This validates that if you voted for this that we are heartbroken the same way and we fall in love the same way. . . I'm 23 and I have no idea what's going to happen with my life!"

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Awards show performances haven't gone so well for Jennifer Lopez over the past few years — in fact, the last two times she took the stage at the AMAs, things have gone horribly wrong. But last night J.Lo redeemed herself and then some, turning out a spectacular tribute to Celia Cruz that showcased her stronger-than-expected singing and extra-sharp dancing. The choreography was hot and her heart was in the right place: J.Lo redeemed!

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WINNER: The Cats of the Internet

Miley Cyrus is well aware she is quickly becoming a walking meme, so to close out the AMAs, she performed "Wrecking Ball" in front of a singing, weeping kitten. The Cats of the Internet won again — but do they ever lose?

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