21/02/2012 20:47 GMT

Adele Lands Best Female Artist Award At the Brits

Record-breaking star Adele has taken the first of the honours at the 2012 Brit Awards, landing the best female artist prize.

The 23-year-old - up for three prizes - looked delighted by her success and shrieked: "Oh my Gawd!"

Collecting the award from Kylie Minogue at London's O2 Arena, Adele, who beat starsincluding Jessie J and Kate Bush to pick up the prize, joked: "I feel like a drag queen next to you.

"It's been an amazing year. Thank you. I'd like to thank my record company for letting me be the kind of artist I want to be."

Dozens of the biggest stars in the music business have gathered at the arena in south-east London to celebrate the most important night in the UK music calendar.

Adele's success continues the prize-winning run that started little over a week ago when she collected six trophies at the Grammys in the US.

Coldplay kicked off the show with their track Charlie Brown, followed by a performance by Florence + The Machine on a stage decked with Greek columns.

Earlier Florence had arrived at the event wearing a peach coloured gown created by Sarah Burton, who designed the Duchess of Cambridge's wedding dress last April.

But she changed into a mini-dress by the time she took the stage.

Show host James Corden asked guests to take a moment to remember "the great, the unique" Whitney Houston, who died earlier this month.

Bruno Mars picked up the title of best international male act, and told guests: "It's been my dream to come here."