The 64th Grammy Awards has been put off, the Recording Academy announced on Wednesday afternoon.
The reason for the delay is due to the high risk involved in hosting the event due to the nationwide spike in Covid-19 infections due to the Omicron variant. On Tuesday, there were 600,000 cases reported nationwide, and it’s expected to climb as the fourth wave hits the United States.
This year’s event was initially set for January 31 and had expected to have a full attendance of celebrities because most of them are now vaccinated. A new date has not been set for the event, the Recording Academy and CBS announced in a joint statement.
“After careful consideration and analysis with city and state officials, health and safety experts, the artist community, and our many partners, the Recording Academy and CBS have postponed the 64th Annual GRAMMY Awards Show,” the statement read. “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 remain our top priority. Given the uncertainty surrounding the Omicron variant, holding the show on January 31 simply contains too many risks.”
The show was scheduled to be held in Los Angeles, where infections have been rapidly rising in the last few days, with 2100 testing positive on Tuesday and about 2,000 people hospitalized.
The January 31 show would have announced winners voted on directly by Academy members rather than secret committees as previously done the Recording Academy announced the changes to voting last year following controversy and boycott by major artists like Kanye, Drake, Nicki Minaj, and others over what they called racial biases in voting that has in the past saw black artistes losing out on some deserving categories.