Another country music awards show is coming to the small screen – the People’s Choice Country Awards.
On Thursday, March 9, NBCUniversal announced the first-ever People’s Choice Country Awards in partnership with the Grand Ole Opry. The new, two-hour show is an extension of the fan-driven People’s Choice Awards.
“We’re excited to partner with the Grand Ole Opry to bring the year’s biggest celebration in country music to Nashville,” said Cassandra Tryon, Senior Vice President, Live Events, NBCUniversal Television & Streaming. “Country fans are passionate about their music and there’s no better place to host this event than from country music’s biggest stage.”
Airing live from the world-famous Grand Ole Opry stage in Nashville, Tenn., People’s Choice Country Awards will take place in September of 2023 and will broadcast on NBC and Peacock.
According to a press release, the People’s Choice Country Awards will “lean into the rich connection between country music and the Opry through chart-topping musical performances, genre-bending collaborations, legendary tributes and surprise moments that regularly happen from the iconic venue.”
Produced by Den Of Thieves with Jesse Ignjatovic, Evan Prager and Barb Bialkowski serving as Executive Producers, the show will extend to social platforms with All-Access Live bringing fans at home behind the scenes as well as interactively connecting country’s most popular stars with their biggest fans.
Billed as the “only award show for the people and by the people,” the People’s Choice Country Awards promises to recognize the best that country music has to offer. Winners will be chosen entirely by the fans.
The People’s Choice Country Awards announcement also revealed that several honorary awards will be dispersed throughout the ceremony.
This just-announced project comes after NBCUniversal’s equity investment in Opry Entertainment Group alongside Atairos. The investment totaled $296 million and was finalized in 2022.
NBC is also home to the People’s Choice Awards. The 2022 ceremony aired on NBC and E! on December 6, 2022. The show, which amassed 173 million total engagements across all platforms, honored country legend Shania Twain with the Music Icon Award.
Twain was on hand to accept the award as well as offered a performance that featured a medley of her greatest hits as well as a new song from her sixth album, Queen of Me. The country hitmaker took to the People’s Choice Awards’ stage for the first time since 2005 and demanded the crowd’s attention with her powerhouse vocals.
“Oh my gosh, this is such a privilege and a dream! Am I dreaming? Thank you so much for presenting me with this award and highlighting my work for having a significant impact,” she said during her acceptance speech. “I don’t know if that’s the right thing to say, but it’s always my wish to inspire people with my music.
“I always miss my mother at these moments my life. She would have loved watching her little girl living this moment right now. But my fans, my friends, my team — you are the ones, who really fill that space… not my mother’s space. But you’re here with me, you’re celebrating, we’re celebrating together, and you’ve made me feel loved and special my whole working life. I’ll always be grateful for that.”
Twain continued, “From a very young age I turned to songwriting as a form of escapism. This is my go-to place. It never occurred to me how powerful lyrics can become when you are able to record and share them with the world. The biggest honor is that people have found strength and inspiration in my work. Thank you and I love you for that.”
Carrie Underwood was also celebrated during the 2022 People’s Choice Awards. She was named “The Country Artist Of 2022” during the show.
“This award is definitely—well, this whole night is all about the fans. And I certainly have just the most incredible fans. You guys have supported me for many years, especially out on the road this year,” she shared during her acceptance speech. “Thank you guys so much for all the love. Thank you for this. What a wonderful early Christmas present. Thank you, I can’t thank you enough. God bless.”
The 2022 People’s Choice Awards also featured appearances by Lizzo, Ryan Reynolds, and more.
The inaugural two-hour “People’s Choice Country Awards” will air live on Sept. 28 at 8 p.m. ET/PT across NBC and Peacock, from the world-famous Grand Ole Opry stage in Nashville.