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2022 Grammy Awards postponed over Omicron risk

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The 64th Grammy Awards have been postponed due to a nationwide spike in COVID-19 cases driven by the Omicron variant. The show was scheduled to take place on January 31, but will be rescheduled for a future date, The Recording Academy and CBS said in a joint statement on Wednesday. 

"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 said. "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 remains our top priority. Given the uncertainty surrounding the Omicron variant, holding the show on January 31 simply contains too many risks."

The awards were slated to be held in Los Angeles. On Tuesday alone, 21,790 people in Los Angeles County tested positive for COVID-19, according to the LA County Public Health office. Nearly 2,000 people in the county were hospitalized with the virus as of Sunday. 

Nominations for the awards were announced on November 23 and were chosen from projects released between September 1, 2020, and September 30, 2021. Jon Batiste led the pack with 11 total nominations, with Justin Bieber and R&B artist H.E.R tying in second with eight nominations. Rapper Jay-Z became the most nominated artist in the show's history, with 83 nods, after getting three nominations. 

The January 31 show would have seen winners chosen directly from votes from academy members. In 2021, the Recording Academy announced it would stop using anonymous review committees following backlash from major artists.  

The new date for the awards show has not yet been announced. 

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