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The 2023 Grammy Awards will feature live performances by Harry Styles, Bad Bunny, Lizzo, Sam Smith, Mary J. Blige and Luke Combs. But will Beyoncé be in the building? Will Adele or Kendrick Lamar hit the stage?
In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, host Trevor Noah and executive producer Ben Winston discuss Sunday’s show, how they’re dealing with the decline in awards show ratings and Beyoncé’s potentially record-breaking moment.
The Grammys will air live from the Crypo.com Arena.
On Those Big Names Who Weren’t Announced to Perform or Attend (Yet)
“Well, all the nominees are invited,” Winston said. “Listen, we are not going to talk about specific talent on the call. I’m so sorry. I’d love to, but I think the relationships we have with talent is so delicate, of when everybody gets announced and who’s coming and whatever else that we just wouldn’t be able to say. What I will say is I feel really great about the show this year. It’s going to be the most star-studded room the Grammys has been for many, many years.”
“There’s a lot going on in our minds right now and a lot that we are trying to confirm and organize, but we feel in a really good place,” he added.
Trevor Noah on Why He is Returning to Host the Grammys
“Well, I have a lot of free time these days, so that’s part of it,” joked the comedian, who recently wrapped his seven-year stint as host of The Daily Show,.
“Moments that you have backstage with the performers — you’re just walking around and you’re seeing Billie Eilish and she’s having a moment with another artist — you don’t get to see that anywhere else, and you don’t get to experience that level of joy. For me to be part of that is truly, I guess now, it’s a three times a lifetime opportunity,” Noah explained. “I never take it for granted because all of these people are the soundtracks to our lives.”
On How to Strategize Following the Decline in Ratings for Awards Shows
“I think that award shows are often hit with a stick of: ‘You rated X in 2018, then Y in 2019, and now you’re at this.’ They ignore the fact that last year we had 94 billion impressions on social media. You could argue that now we are reaching a bigger audience than we’ve ever reached before, but we just have to change the way we’re analyzing it,” Winston said.
“Do I think the rating will go down from last year? I’d be surprised if it didn’t. That’s the way television on network is going. Do I think the Paramount+ streaming numbers will go up? Yes. Do I think the TikTok, YouTube, Instagram videos that we’re going to put out there will go up? Absolutely,” he explained. “We can judge things by the way we did in 2015, or we can live in the world that we’re all existing in now and actually accept that we’ve got to get behind these things and support these things because they are a celebration of music and culture and entertainment that we all need.”
“As long as we can be successful in the ways that we need to be in 2023, then I think it’s the biggest night of music and it’ll be an amazing night of entertainment.”
On Beyoncé’s Potentially History-Making Moment
Beyoncé became the most decorated woman in Grammy history at the 2021 show, and now she’s on track to become the person with the most Grammy wins of all time.
She’s won 28 honors and needs to win four to beat the record set by the late conductor Georg Solti, who has won 31 Grammys. Beyoncé is nominated for nine Grammys at Sunday’s show.
“I can think of few artists who are more deserving of holding that title and that position. And without disrespecting any of the previous holders of that title in any way, it is safe to say that Beyoncé has truly done more than many to shape not just music, but pop culture, the perception of Black women, Black people in general, connecting the diaspora in the way she creates her music, defining dance moves. I mean, she’s left an indelible impression,” Noah said. “Oftentimes people have amazing influences on music or on culture and then we’ll say, ‘Oh, it would’ve been great if they were celebrated.’ It’s wonderful that Beyoncé gets her flowers.”
“I’ve got to be honest with you, I am so excited about the idea of that happening on the show,” Winston chimed in. “There’s things you control and there’s things that you can’t control. The things you can control are who comes, the performances, the running order, everything else. But who wins has sadly nothing to do with Trevor or I.”
“We can’t deny that it would be a moment of music history that would happen if she were to win. I think it would be remarkable and it would be a real piece of television history, and like any producer of live TV shows, you like those happening on shows that you make,” the 12-time Emmy winner said.
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