NASHVILLE, Tennessee — Country star Kelsea Ballerini is making a last-minute pivot to co-hosting the CMT Music Awards remotely after testing positive for COVID-19 days before the show.
Tony Mackie, actor and Ballerini were scheduled to host Monday’s awards show on CBS. CMT and CBS confirmed that Ballerini would remain at home on Monday morning. Ballerini explained that Ballerini is suffering from a serious illness and CMT has set up the facility so that she can host and perform at home.
“It has been set it up in a way where I can safely still co-host the Awards and perform on the show tonight,” Ballerini said in a statement. “This is not what we had planned for, but I am ready to make lemonade out of these lemons.”
In addition, the leading nominee for the night, Kane Brown, has been tapped to help Mackie — who starred in Marvel’s ‘’The Falcon and the Winter Soldier” — with in-person co-hosting. Brown co-hosted the fan-voted event twice last year with Ballerini.
“I’m honored the team at CBS and CMT asked me to step in as a co-host and I am so glad to be back again hosting for a bonus third year,” said Brown in a statement. “Everyone has been working hard to put on an amazing show for the fans and I’m excited to get to work with Anthony and Kelsea and have a great night that celebrates country music.”
CMT Music Awards performances will include Kenny Chesney (with Mickey Guyton and Black Pumas), Miranda Lambert, Cody Johnson and Miranda Lambert, Little Big Town and Ryan Hurd as well as Cody Johnson and Miranda Lambert. For their first performance at an awards ceremony in more than two decades, the Judds will reunite at CMT Music Awards.
Underwood is the most awarded artist in CMT history with 23 prior wins and has a chance to extend her lead with nominations for music video of the year and collaborative video of the year for her duet with Jason Aldean, “If I Didn’t Love You.”
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