The 24-year-old singer was honored with the Extraordinary Evolution Award at the 2018 Latin American Music Awards on Thursday. Maluma -- who was also nominated for four Latin AMAs, including Artist of the Year, and set to perform at the awards show with Prince Royce -- took the stage to accept the award at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood.
Maluma first kicked things off with a show-stopping performance of "Mala Mía" feauring all-female dancers of all ages, dressed as ninjas. The song brought the entire crowd to their feet Ana María Polo took the stage to present him with his award.
"First of all, I want to thank all of you, because it's been very few years of my career, but I've been able to live a lot of things. And it's because of you that I wake up everyday with more motivation and hunger to persevere and dream," Maluma said. "Thank you to God, because without him, I'd have nothing."
"Thank you to the fans, without you, nothing would ever happen. I wake up everyday for you, to work and accomplish my dreams. On the other hand, women, listen to what I have to say. Que viva gender equality," he continued. "And as you know, you do whatever you want with us men."
The Extraordinary Evolution Award is presented to a young performer who has demonstrated change and accelerated growth as an artist, to reach the pinnacle of success in a short period of time -- which the Colombian singer has definitely embodied.
"That's what I always wanted to do with my career, you know?" Maluma told ET of the honor on Tuesday, ahead of the awards show. "Doing different things -- I think that that's very important for me. That night's going to be beautiful for me, because I've been like, waiting for that moment."
"And to know all the things that I'm doing for my career and for the young people... I think that that's going to be an incredible award that's going to remind me that [to] work hard, it pays off," he added.
Since 2015, 24 of Maluma's songs have made the Billboard Latin Airplay chart, nine of which went No. 1. His sophomore album, Pretty Boy Dirty Boy, debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Top Latin Albums chart in 2015, and his latest album, F.A.M.E., debuted at the same position in June of this year. It still stands on the chart at No. 5.
During an August interview with ET, Maluma opened up about how proud he was to be contributing to the Latin music scene, and its incredible impact on the world.
"I think we’re making history. I think it’s the first time in history that Latin music and Latin culture is around the world the way it’s happening right now," he said. "And being part of it, it makes me proud. We have a huge responsibility behind us. But, I think that we're going to make it. We’re working for it and the best is yet to come."