2020 MTV VMAs to Be Held in New York City

Marking the first event at the Barclays Center since COVID-19 hit the city.

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Music
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The 2020 MTV VMAs will be held at the Barclays Center this August, following the approval of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo. Aiming to pay homage to the “strength, spirit and incredible resilience” of the city and its residents, the annual awards ceremony is set to feature performances from various iconic locations spanning all five boroughs.

In his June 29 press briefing, Gov. Cuomo announced that the VMAs will be allowed to proceed with a limited to no audience. Show producers and Barclays Center management will be implementing the best practices for the ceremony due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19), including the execution of social distancing procedures, capacity limitation, the virtualization of components where possible and a minimal to no audience.

“We’re elated to bring the 2020 “VMAs” back to NYC, the cultural mecca of the world where music and entertainment are woven into the DNA,” Bruce Gillmer, President of Music, Music Talent, Programming & Events for ViacomCBS Media Networks, said in a statement.

“The 2020 MTV VMAs will be the first Barclays Center event since the COVID-19 pandemic reached New York,” added Oliver Weisberg, CEO of Barclays Center and the Brooklyn Nets. “We’re very excited to once again host this legendary night of music, and are especially proud of the impact it will have on our Brooklyn community through the creation of local jobs. We deeply appreciate the support and advice of state and local government officials, as well as our internal management and team of medical experts, all of whom have been working hard to ensure the health and safety of everyone involved, and we will continue to closely follow their guidance throughout every step of the planning process with our partners at ViacomCBS.”

The COVID-19 pandemic first hit New York City in March 2020 and has caused many major music-related engagements to cancel, including the annual Governors Ball and countless cross-country tours.

Elsewhere in music, Björk will be one of the first few musical artists to hold a live audience concert.

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