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Kelsea Ballerini Will Host 2024 CMT Awards for 4th Time — But Solo for 1st Time

Kelsea Ballerini Will Host 2024 CMT Awards Solo
Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images

Kelsea Ballerini will host the 2024 CMT Awards without a cohost by her side.

The singer, 30, has hosted the CMT Awards since 2021 but she typically has at least one cohost by her side. Most years, it was Kane Brown sharing MC duties, with Anthony Mackie joining the pair in 2022.

The 2024 Country Music Television Awards will air live on CBS from the Moody Center in Austin, Texas on Sunday, April 7, at 8 p.m. ET. The CMT Awards will also stream live on Paramount+.

Ballerini stole the spotlight last year at country music’s fan-voted award show. First, she made her red carpet debut with boyfriend Chase Stokes, and then she shined a light on issues close to her heart. Ballerini opened the show with an emotional tribute to victims of the Nashville school shooting that took place days earlier.

CMT Music Awards 2023 - Kelsea Ballerini - 647

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“I wanted to personally stand up here and share this moment, because on August 21 2008, I watched Ryan McDonald, my 15-year-old classmate at Central High School, lose his life to a gun in our cafeteria,” she shared during the 2023 broadcast. “Tonight’s broadcast is dedicated to the ever-growing list of families, friends, survivors, witnesses and responders whose lives continue to forever be changed by gun violence. I pray, deeply, that the closeness and the community we feel for the next few hours through of music can soon turn into action — like real action — that moves us forward together to create change for the safety of our kids and our loved ones.”

Later in the broadcast, she took the stage to perform “If You Go Down (I’m Goin’ Down Too)” with drag queens Kennedy Davenport, Manila Luzon, Jan Sport and Olivia Lux. The performance came weeks after Tennessee Senate Bill 3 (a.k.a Tennessee drag ban), which banned “adult cabaret performance” in front of children, was signed by the governor.

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The singer is known for her raw honesty. Her Grammy-nominated breakup album, Rolling Up the Welcome Mat (For Good), chronicled her moving on after her 2022 divorce from Morgan Evans. However, she exclusively told Us Weekly that the album evolved into something that was more universal when fans started latching onto improvisations she made during live performances.

“It’s not mine anymore, it’s just not. Like, it’s very much so an ‘ours’ thing. And so [the fans have] been very vocal from the very beginning — as soon as I played ‘Blindsided’ on SNL, they were like, ‘We need the ‘Yeah, Sure, OK’ version,’” she told Us in August 2023. “And then when I started singing ‘Penthouse’ live, it kind of just changed and evolved every night. And then one day, on a whim, I just changed one word and it took on a whole new life and they were like, ‘We need that version.’ It’s called ‘The Healed Version.’ I never made that up! That was them.”

The CMT Awards nominees will be announced in March.

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