iHeartRadio Music Awards Postpone Show amid Coronavirus Pandemic
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The 2020 iHeartRadio Music Awards will not be taking place on March 29.
iHeartRadio confirmed the show’s postponement on Monday, stating the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) as the cause for the abrupt change.
“As you may know, the Shrine in Los Angeles recently announced that it is officially closed for events through March 31 the earliest — which includes the iHeartRadio Music Awards scheduled to air on FOX, Sunday, March 29. The safety of our guests, employees, artists and partners is our main priority,” the company said in a statement.
“iHeartMedia and FOX will plan to reschedule at the appropriate time and will provide more information and relevant updates as they become available. Refunds are being issued to ticketed guests.”
The show, which celebrates the most-played artists and songs on iHeartRadio stations and the app throughout the past year, was originally scheduled to take place at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles and simultaneously air live at 8 p.m. ET on FOX.
Usher was set to host and was named as a performer, along with fellow headlining acts Halsey, Lizzo and Justin Bieber, who was set to perform his new music following the release of his latest album Changes and was the first performer announced back in January.
The iHeartRadio Music Awards is among the first major televised awards ceremonies to be canceled or postponed amid the ongoing fears of the coronavirus.
The coronavirus has caused major disruptions on a global scale, including schools being suspended or classes being canceled, sports teams have been playing games without fans in the stands, late-night shows have started to film without live audiences, political rallies have been canceled and airlines have started to cancel flights in response to the fast-spreading disease.
The World Health Organization declared the coronavirus outbreak a global pandemic, urging world leaders and citizens to take action to help stop the spread of COVID-19. As of Monday, there have been at least 3,602 confirmed cases of coronavirus and 66 deaths in the U.S., according to a New York Times database. Those most at risk are people over the age of 60, especially those with pre-existing medical conditions.
Despite precautions being taken by retailers, casinos and more, on Sunday night, the National Security Council sent out a message urging Americans not to believe reports that a country-wide quarantine is underway.
“Text message rumors of a national #quarantine are FAKE,” they tweeted. “There is no national lockdown.” Instead, they pointed followers to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, whom they say have provided and “will continue to post the latest guidance on COVID-19.”
Across the globe, there have been close to 175,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus, with most in China, at more than 81,000, Johns Hopkins University reports. More than 6,700 worldwide have died as a result of the virus, while over 77,000 have recovered after having it.