Grammy award ceremony pushed to March due to COVID surge in Los Angeles

Originally scheduled for Jan. 31 at Staples Center

City News Service | 1/6/2021, 11:57 a.m.
The 63rd annual Grammy Awards became the latest victim of the COVID-19 pandemic...

The 63rd annual Grammy Awards became the latest victim of the COVID-19 pandemic Tuesday, with the Jan. 31 Staples Center ceremony rescheduled for March.

"After thoughtful conversations with health experts, our host and artists scheduled to appear, we are rescheduling the 63rd Annual Grammy Awards to be broadcast Sunday, March 14, 2021,'' according to a statement from the Recording Academy. "The deteriorating COVID situation in Los Angeles, with hospital services being overwhelmed, ICUs having reached capacity and new guidance from state and local governments have all led us to conclude that postponing our show was the right thing to do.

"Nothing is more important than the health and safety of those in our music community and the hundreds of people who work tirelessly on producing the show. We want to thank all of the talented artists, the staff, our vendors and especially this year's nominees for their understanding, patience and willingness to work with us as we navigate these unprecedented times.''

The Grammy website earlier listed the amended show date as March 21, but the academy subsequently removed that reference, then issued the statement setting the telecast for March 14.

The announcement means two major entertainment industry award shows -- the Grammys and the Screen Actors Guild Awards -- will be held on the same day.

SAG-AFTRA released a statement Tuesday night declaring it was "extremely disappointed to hear of the conflicting date, March 14th.''

"We announced the same date for the SAG Awards last July with the intent to give the greatest possible scheduling consideration for other awards shows,'' the statement said. "We expect the same consideration from sister organizations throughout the industry.

"The SAG Awards recognizes outstanding acting performances over the past year. We will again put on a spectacular show that accomplishes that mission.

"Our two organizations, SAG-AFTRA and the Recording Academy, share members and work together effectively to advocate for artists in many areas. In an environment that is increasingly challenging for televised awards programs, we also have a mutual interest in successfully showcasing the artistry and talent of our respective memberships.''

SAG-AFTRA announced it is in contact with the Recording Academy and "will continue to work with our sister organizations to find ways to make this year's awards season as successful as possible.''

There was no immediate word on what format the Grammy show will take.

The Grammy ceremony, set to originate from Staples Center hosted by comedian Trevor Noah, was already anticipated to be a largely remote affair, similar to other recent awards shows, including the Emmys.

Beyonce is the top nominee this year, with nine nods including record and song of the year for "Black Parade,'' while Dua Lipa, Roddy Ricch and Taylor Swift each have six. Final voting for the Grammys ended Monday.