Pop your popcorn and cozy on up to the couch. The 2017 Billboard Music Awards are nearly here!
Billboard‘s annual honors, celebrating music’s biggest chart-topping artists, have been airing since 1989 – though took a four-year break for contract negotiations in 2007.
This year’s show will air live on both costs from Las Vegas’ T-Mobile Arena on Sunday, May 21 (at 8 p.m. ET) on ABC.
Here’s everything you need to know:
Ludacris will return as co-host for the fourth consecutive year, alongside first-time co-host Vanessa Hudgens.
“I’M BACK FOR YEAR NUMBER 4 so I must be doing something right!” the 39-year-old star wrote on Instagram.
Hudgens, 28, also posted about the gig on Instagram — writing, “I’m so unbelievably excited to host the @BBMAs this year with @Ludacris!”
Like any good awards show, the BBMAs will be packed full with performances — beginning with Nicki Minaj who will open the show with a 9-minute performance featuring Lil Wayne, Jason Derulo and David Guetta. The set will be a celebration of the 34-year-old rapper, who recently beat Aretha Franklin‘s long-standing record for female artist charting the most songs on the Billboard Hot 100.
Elsewhere on the show, The Chainsmokers will sing their new hit single “Young” — while Halsey will perform “Now or Never” from her forthcoming album, and Sam Hunt will perform his No. 1 Billboard Hot Country Songs hit “Body Like a Back Road.”
Florida Georgia Line and John Legend will be just one of the evening’s surprising collaborations. The two will team up for a superstar duet, mixing their country and soulful pop styles in a cover of mashup of FGL’s “H.O.L.Y.” and Legend’s “Surefire.”
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Céline Dion will take the stage to celebrate the 20th anniversary of her smash hit “My Heart Will Go On” — just a year after winning the show’s prestigious ICON Award.
That honor this year goes to Cher, who — “Believe” it or not — will turn back time for her first live awards show performance in more than 15 years. After singing her ’90s anthem, “Believe,” she’ll accept the honor — joining previous winners Jennifer Lopez, Prince, Stevie Wonder, Neil Diamond, and Dion.
Expect other showings from Bruno Mars, Camila Cabello, Drake, Ed Sheeran, Imagine Dragons, Lorde, Julia Michaels and Miley Cyrus — the latter singing her new single “Malibu.”
What About the Nominees?
Drake and The Chainsmokers lead the nominees with 22 nods each. Not far behind them are Twenty One Pilots with 17 nominations, Rihanna with 14, The Weeknd with 13 and Beyoncé with eight.
Finalists are based on Nielsen U.S. year-end chart performance – determined by collecting data on sales, number of downloads and total airplay. Michael Jackson has 40 career wins – the most by any male artist. Janet Jackson has the most awards for female artist, with 33 wins.
The three biggest awards of the evening are top artist, top Billboard 200 album and top hot 100 Song – won last year by Adele, her album 25 and Wiz Khalifa and Charlie Puth’s “See You Again,” respectively.
Fans can also vote on two awards — top social artist (Nominees of which include Justin Bieber, BTS, Selena Gomez, Ariana Grande and Shawn Mendes) and Billboard chart achievement award (where Minaji, Luke Bryan, The Chainsmokers, The Weeknd, and Twenty One Pilots are competing).
A full list of nominees can be found here.
And the Presenters?
Buckle up – because Hollywood’s brightest will be hitting the stage to hand out awards on Sunday night.
Presenters include Kate Beckinsale, Sean “Diddy” Combs, Mark Cuban, Noah Cyrus, Alexandra Daddario, DJ Khaled, Josh Duhamel, Ansel Elgort, Sara Foster, G-Eazy, Kevin Hart, Ed Helms, Prince Michael Jackson, Rachel Lindsay, Lea Michele, Olivia Munn, Rita Ora, Logan Paul, Rachel Platten, Bebe Rexha, Nicole Scherzinger, Miss America 2017 Savvy Shields, Jussie Smollett, Hailee Steinfeld, Lindsey Stirling, and Ashley Tisdale.
Is There a Pre-Show?
Yup! The “T-Mobile Magenta Carpet Live at the BBMAs” is the official pre-show for the 2017 Billboard Music Awards — kicking off two hours before the big show (6 p.m. ET).
Hosting the pre-show will be Jessie James Decker, AJ Gibson, Jeannie Mai and Sirius XM’s Sway Calloway — all who will take command of the multiple T-Mobile Stages. Chris Daughtry and Laura Marano, meanwhile, will host from the Xfinity Stage.
The pre-show will stream live the BBMAs official Twitter (@BBMAs) or at BBMAs.twitter.com.
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