October 09, 2018 11:55 PM

The American Music Awards brought together all different genres for one of music’s biggest nights!

Not only did Taylor Swift kick off the show with an explosive opener, she officially became the winningest female artist in AMAs history. Between reactions to the big moments for the winners to the friendly meetups between A-listers during commercial breaks, PEOPLE caught all the behind-the-scenes action.

Here are the moments you didn’t see on TV.

Dua Lipa and Kelsea Ballerini
Kevin Mazur/Getty

On the Red Carpet

Khalid walked the red carpet with a selfie stick and perfectly paused whenever a fan on the carpet wanted to stop and take a photo op.

Bachelorette alums Ben Higgins and Dean Unglert coordinated with bow ties, which Higgins said he bought from Walmart.

And it was date night for many A-list couples as Cardi B and Offset were among those to pack on the PDA as well as Halsey and G-Eazy. It was even a double date outing for Florida Georgia Line’s Brian Kelley and Tyler Hubbard who were accompanied by their respective wives, Hayley and Brittney.

Check out PEOPLE’s full AMAs coverage to get the latest news on one of music’s biggest nights.

Inside the Show

Host with the most Tracee Ellis Ross was supported by brother Evan Ross and his wife Ashlee Simpson, who cheered on the black-ish star with a standing ovation during her opening dance number.

Post Malone, who sported a new haircut, was spotted with a glass of red wine in his hand at the top of the show and grabbed a cocktail before his performance.

Real Housewives of New York City alum Carole Radziwill posed with fans in the audience.

After Mariah Carey‘s performance of “With You,” her backup dancers made a human wall so fans couldn’t see the singer as she was taken off the platform on stage.

Presenter and American Horror Story star Billy Eichner received a standing ovation when he talked about the importance of believing in women in a reference to Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation.

Cardi B was arguably the most popular star inside Microsoft Theater as many in attendance mobbed her for photos during the commercials.

Taylor Swift and Cardi B
Kevin Mazur/AMA2018/Getty
Post Malone
Jesse Grant/Getty

RELATED: See the Full List of 2018 American Music Awards Winners!

Late rapper Xxxtentacion’s mother Cleopatra Bernard tearfully accepted his win for favorite soul/R&B album. There was lots of support from the audience as they cheered her on and expressed admiration for the star, who was fatally shot at a motorcycle dealership outside of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, in June. He was 20.

Despite Panic at the Disco’s performance of “Bohemian Rhapsody” being previously recorded and shown on a screen, many in the audience stood and swayed for the band’s rendition. Several even joined in by singing along to the lyric, “Nothing really matters to me.”

Cardi B
Kevin Mazur/Getty

Meanwhile, Camila Cabello could barely keep a hold on her winnings backstage.

Camila Cabello
Steve Granitz/WireImage

RELATED: Taylor Swift Makes Her AMAs Red Carpet Return in Sexy Mirrored Mini Dress and Thigh-High Boots

Taylor Swift and Camila Cabello
Kevin Mazur/Getty

However, the biggest applause of the night went to Swift, specifically after she won artist of the year. The audience reaction was especially noteworthy when the pop star reminded her Swifties to go out and vote in the midterm elections.

This year’s AMAs ended with an all-star tribute to the late Aretha Franklin, who died at age 76 on Aug. 19 of advance pancreatic cancer of the neuroendocrine type. Fans in attendance were spotted dancing in the aisles and in their seats.

Aretha Franklin tribute
Frederick M. Brown/Getty

Following the show, Post Malone hosted the dick clark production’s AMAs after party, held at The h.wood Group’s rooftop lounge, Harriet’s, where guests such as Halsey, G-Eazy, Shawn Mendes, The Chainsmokers and more enjoyed specialty cocktails and tunes by celebrity DJs Taco & Pedro.

Halsey and G-Eazy
Paul Best/Getty

The 2018 American Music Awards aired live from the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles on Tuesday, Oct. 9 at 8 p.m. EST on ABC.

You May Like