Sam Smith said he was thrilled to “celebrate being gay” as he attended the Attitude magazine annual awards.
The Too Good At Goodbyes singer, 25, made his appearance at the glamorous London event on Thursday, joining the likes of Kylie Minogue, Mel C, Little Mix’s Jade Thirlwall, Pixie Lott and actress Laverne Cox, weeks after delighting fans with his return to the musical limelight.
His hit single has already spent a three-week stint at the top of the UK charts – and his next album, The Thrill Of It All, is just days away.
He told the Press Association: “This is my first Attitude Awards ever and I am so excited to just be around everyone and celebrate being gay with everyone.
“I really want to meet Laverne Cox and give her a massive hug for being so amazing.”
On his renewed success on the music scene, he added: “I feel really lucky – I was really scared before releasing my second album that people wouldn’t want to hear me sing again, and I feel really welcomed the last few weeks.
“I love singing, I’ve missed being out and singing live and meeting the fans. Being with fans just makes me happy, that’s the only way I can explain it.”
The star-spangled event also saw Prince Harry take to the stage as he picked up the publication’s prestigious legacy award on behalf of his late mother, Diana, Princess of Wales.
Other winners during the evening, hosted by Olympic diver Tom Daley, included: Charli XCX, who picked up the Music award, Laverne Cox, who was presented with the Inspiration award, and Amanda Holden, who was named honorary gay.
As Minogue stepped onto the stage to receive her Legend award, she gave a special message to the LGBT community.
“We just are. You get me and I get you,” she said. “This is an honour. I look forward to making many more memories with you.”
The awards were sponsored by Jaguar and Virgin and presented at the Roundhouse in Camden, north London.
The cast of upcoming musical Everybody’s Talking About Jamie – about a gay teenager desperate to wear a dress to his prom – performed one of its key numbers to open the show, moments before its members were presented with the Culture Award.
Composer Dan Gillespie Sells told the Press Association: “We wanted to do something that is relevant to 16-year-olds dealing with identity now, and that we can identify with as modern LGBT people. It’s about identity, it’s about queerness, it’s about everything that speaks to young people today.”