The 64th Grammy Awards have been rescheduled due to an increase in COVID-19 cases caused by the Omicron variant across the country. The show, which was supposed to take place on January 31, has been rescheduled for a later date, according to a joint statement issued by The Recording Academy and CBS on Wednesday.
“The Recording Academy and CBS have postponed the 64th Annual GRAMMY Awards Show after careful consideration and analysis with city and state officials, health and safety experts, the artist community, and our many partners,” the statement said.
“Our top priority remains the health and safety of those in our music community, the live audience, and the hundreds of people who work tirelessly to produce our show.” Given the uncertainty surrounding the Omicron variant, holding the show on January 31 is simply too risky.”
The ceremony was supposed to take place in Los Angeles. According to the LA County Public Health office, 21,790 people in Los Angeles County tested positive for COVID-19 on Tuesday alone. As of Sunday, nearly 2,000 people in the county had been hospitalized with the virus.
Nominations for the awards were announced on November 23, with projects released between September 1, 2020, and September 30, 2021 being eligible. Jon Batiste led the pack with 11 nominations, while Justin Bieber and R&B artist H.E.R tied for second with eight. After receiving three nominations, rapper Jay-Z became the most nominated artist in the show’s history, with 83 nods.
The winners of the January 31 show would have been chosen directly from votes cast by academy members. Following backlash from major artists, the Recording Academy announced in 2021 that it would discontinue the use of anonymous review committees.
The new date for the awards ceremony has yet to be announced.