Latin Grammys to celebrate 20 years with massive performance

This combination photo shows, from left, actress Paz Vega, actor-singer Ricky Martin and actress Roselyn Sanchez, who will host the 20th Latin Grammy Awards on Thursday in Las Vegas, Nev. (AP Photo)
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The Latin Grammys will celebrate its 20th anniversary with a 20-artist performance in a tribute to the legacy of Latin music.

Thursday night’s show at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas will open with a performance featuring Prince Royce, Anitta, Fito Páez, Natalia Jiménez, Beto Cuevas, Calibre 50, Carlos Rivera, Draco Rosa, Leonel García, Milly Quezada, Olga Tañón, Reik and Tony Succar.

Ricky Martin, Roselyn Sánchez and Paz Vega will host the show, which will also include performances by Residente, Bad Bunny, Luis Fonsi, Farruko, Ozuna, Alicia Keys and Miguel. Juanes, who was named the Latin Recording Academy’s 2019 Person of the Year, will sing a medley of his hits. And Mexican pop singer Alejandro Fernández will perform with his father Vicente Fernández and his son Alex Fernández.

Veteran singer-songwriter Alejandro Sanz, who is the top nominee with eight, will also take the stage. Breakthrough performer Rosalía, who won two Latin Grammys last year, is behind Sanz with five nominations. She will also perform at the show, which begins at 8 p.m. Eastern and is airing live on Univision. Both Sanz and Rosalía are nominated for album of the year, along with Fonsi, Succar, Rubén Blades, Sebastián Yatra, Paula Arenas, Andrés Calamaro, Fonseca and Ximena Sariñana.

None of the uber-popular Latin trap and reggaeton acts received nominations for the top prize, or in other big categories like song of the year, record of the year and best new artist. The Latin Grammys received backlash for dismissing performers like J Balvin, Bad Bunny, Ozuna, Daddy Yankee, Maluma and Nicky Jam — artists who have dominated on streaming services, sold out arenas like Madison Square Garden, racked in millions of YouTube views and topped the charts with multiple songs.

The omissions were especially surprising since the Latin Grammys have 10 nominees for its top four categories.

When the nominations were released in September, Balvin posted a photo of the Grammy logo with a large red “X” across it on Instagram. Words on the image read in Spanish: “Without reggaeton, there’s no Latin Grammys.”

Balvin, however, did receive two nominations — his collaborations with Rosalía (“Con Altura”) and De La Ghetto (“Caliente”) makes him a double nominee for best urban song. His new album with Bad Bunny, “Oasis,” was not eligible for this year’s Latin Grammys but will qualify in 2020. Songs and albums released between June 1, 2018 and May 31, 2019 were eligible.

Maluma, Nicky Jam and Karol G, last year’s winner for best new artist, earned zero nominations, while other stars like Bad Bunny, Daddy Yankee and Ozuna were restricted to categories such as best urban music album, best urban song and best urban fusion/performance.

Pop singers, however, did well. Camila Cabello is up for record of the year, song of the year and best pop song for “Mi Persona Favorita” with Sanz, while Alessia Cara and Juanes’ “Querer Mejor” is nominated for song and record of the year.

Most of the awards — 39 out of 50 — will be handed at the Latin Grammys Premiere, a ceremony that is not televised but can be followed through the Latin Grammy Facebook page beginning at 4:30 p.m. EDT.q