Mariah Carey has faced backlash for failing to assist music icon Stevie Wonder onstage at a pre-Grammys event days ago.
The singer, 54, was being honoured by 73-year-old Wonder at The Recording Academy Honours presented by The Black Music Collective (BMC) event held on Thursday at the Fairmont Century Plaza in LA, where she received the Global Impact Award.
“Every time we meet and talk, it’s like having a brand new day,” Wonder – who was diagnosed with retinopathy of prematurity shortly after birth and has been blind ever since – told his longtime friend onstage as they embraced.
“I thank you for your friendship, your heart and the consistent spirit of love that you show. I’m here because I do love you, forever, and I just want to say this to you.”
Carey then replied: “I will never not get excited to be in the company of your greatness!”
However, her words did not appear to match her actions as fans speculated whether she intentionally removed Stevie’s hand from her shoulder so she could deliver her acceptance speech at the front of the stage.
The That’s What Friends Are For singer then reached for a nearby microphone to hand to Carey, but she had already walked past him to use a different microphone at the front of the stage.
This appeared to cause Wonder to lose his balance as he tried to grab hold of something to keep him from toppling over. He then had trouble navigating the stage as Carey left his side.
“I can’t even remark on what just happened,” she told the audience as Wonder stood unassisted in the background, still holding a microphone out for Carey to use.
“Does anyone realise this is Stevie Wonder? Thank you Stevie Wonderrrrr.”
Despite her kind words, fans on social media weren’t happy with her actions.
“Mariah was wrong as hell for that,” tweeted one critic, while another remarked: “He was thinking about her but she wasn’t thinking about him. I don’t like this.”
“Stevie fighting for his life in the back omg somebody help unc,” tweeted another.
Carey then began to throw shade at the Grammys, of which she has won five awards out of 34 nominations in her decades-long career.
Her last win came in 2006 when she took home three awards: Best Contemporary R&B Album for The Emancipation Of Mimi, Best R&B Song and Best Female R&B Vocal Performance for We Belong Together.
“Is this a real Grammy? I haven’t seen one in soooooo long,” she joked on stage, before saying of her trophy, “It’s weird. I don’t know. We’ll figure out what this is later.”