VMAs: Hollywood Reporter's Guide to the 2019 MTV Video Music Awards

Billy Ray Cyrus and Lil Nas X - BET Awards - H Getty 2019
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What to know about the 2019 VMAs, airing live Monday at 8 p.m. ET on MTV.

From the beginnings of the Kanye West-Taylor Swift beef to Miley Cyrus and Robin Thicke's raunchy 2013 "Blurred Lines" performance to the time Fiona Apple claimed that "this world is bulls**t," the MTV Video Music Awards has brought about scores of memorable moments and performances.

The 2019 VMAs shouldn't be any different. 

Whether the Monday night awards show will fuel any fights or feature eyebrow-raising performances, here's everything to know about the 2019 MTV Video Music Awards. 

How to Watch

The 36th annual MTV Video Music Awards will broadcast live from the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey, on Monday, Aug. 26, at 8 p.m. ET/PT.

Fans can tune in on MTV or live-stream it from MTV Live or on Twitter through the show's MTV VMA Stan Cam, with the latter providing a more interactive viewing experience of the awards show.

In addition, a preshow featuring performances by Ava Max, CNCO and Megan Thee Stallion will air starting at 7 p.m. ET/PT.

THR Style will also cover for the 2019 MTV VMA red carpet. Read the coverage here.

Who to Watch

Comedian and actor Sebastian Maniscalco will host the 36th annual awards show, following 2018's hostless ceremony. The Green Book and The Irishman actor made the announcement during a June episode of The Tonight Show

The show's roster of presenters includes Lenny Kravitz, John Travolta, Billy Ray Cyrus, Jonathan Van Ness, Keke Palmer, Lindsey Vonn, Rick Ross, Salt-N-Pepa and Ice-T. In addition, The Sopranos stars Drea De Matteo, Jamie-Lynn Sigler and Vincent Pastore are reuniting to present.

U.S. Women's National Soccer Team members Alex Morgan, Ali Krieger and Ashlyn Harris; Bebe Rexha; Megan Thee Stallion; French Montana; Hailee Steinfeld; P.K. Subban; and Victor Cruz will also present during Monday night's ceremony. 

Handfuls of the show's nominees are also slated to perform. Nominees Bad Bunny, J Balvin and Rosalía will perform their hits, and Lizzo will make her VMA debut. 

Also bringing their musical chops to the VMA stage will be Lil Nas X and "Seniorita" singers Camila Cabello and Shawn Mendes. 

Ten years after their last VMA performance, the Jonas Brothers will play a special remote performance outside of the Prudential Center and along the New Jersey skyline. 

Additionally, Taylor Swift, who has collected 10 VMA nominations, will open the show and sing some of her hits from her latest album Lover. The Monday night performance will mark her first time hitting the VMA stage since 2015. 

Missy Elliot, the 2019 recipient of the award show's Video Vanguard Award, will also perform. The special performance will be Elliot's first time back at on the VMA stage in 13 years.  

Receiving the VMA's first-ever MTV Fashion Trailblazer Award will be Marc Jacobs. The designer has dressed scores of stars and musicians, including Cher, Missy Elliott, Lady Gaga, Cardi B and Nicki Minaj. 


Ariana Grande and Taylor Swift are neck-and-neck for most nominations, with 10 noms each in categories including video of the year, song of the year and best pop video. Trailing behind the singers is newcomer Billie Eilish with a total of nine nominations and Lil Nas X with eight nods. 

Also raking in multiple nominations are Halsey with six, Mendes with five and Cabello, Cardi B, J Balvin, Jonas Brothers and BTS nabbing four each.

MTV revealed its nominees via the VMA chatbot, which provided fans with a sneak peek of nominations list. Voting closed on Aug. 15.

Watch some of the nominated videos here.