The singer has found herself at the centre of a debate over female representation in music after she, as the only woman on the album of the year shortlist, was also the only nominee not asked to perform solo on the night. She was reportedly invited to join a tribute to the late Tom Petty, which she is thought to have declined. In the ad, she seemed to address the issue, saying: “Thank you, also, for believing in female musicians. You set a beautiful precedent!”
Of the 13 women, six are heads of European countries, two are heads of South American countries and four are their country’s first female leaders. Europe counts the most women in power. Bangladesh leads in longevity – its prime minister Sheik Hasina has been in power for 13 years, accumulated over two terms. Marshall Islands president Hilda Heine is Ardern’s only female counterpart in the Asia-Pacific region and is relatively new to the job, having served just over a year.