The 40th Annual Canadian Country Music Awards in Calgary

Calgarian Megan Dawson performs during the 40th Annual Canadian Country Music Awards announcement at the National Music Center in Calgary on Tuesday, May 17, 2022. Dawson was the first artist to perform at the Country Music Hall of Fame in more than two years . ARYN TOOMBS / FOR LIVEWIRE CALGARY

The Canadian Country Music Awards return to Calgary for a record 10th time.

The 40th annual CCMAs will also bring a week of country music to town, with a number of live performances scheduled ahead of the awards ceremony on Sept. 11.

The event is expected to inject $12 million into Calgary’s economy.

Tuesday’s announcement also marked the first live performances held at the National Music Center’s Country Music Hall of Fame in more than two years. Local pop-country artist Megan Dawson and 26-time CCMA winner Gord Bamford performed a short set of songs.

“The city of Calgary has, as you all know, a very rich musical history… A history of Canadian country music,” said Andrew Mosker, Founding President and CEO of NMC.

Tickets for the CCMAs, which will take place at the Saddledome, go on sale May 20. Prices start at $50. Fans who want to pre-purchase tickets until then can find special pre-purchase codes on CCMA’s social media.

Important to bring back live music

The first ballot for CCMA members began last week, May 11. Candidates in this round of voting will decide the top 10 finalists in each category. The third ballot will take place in July and will decide the last 5 nominees.

Last year, Canadian country music superstar Brett Kissel won the Fans’ Choice award. Alberta’s Tenille Townes won her third straight Female Artist of the Year award. Dallas Smith, who was recognized as one of Canada’s most performed country artists of 2021, won the Male Artist of the Year award.

Amy Jeninga, president of the CCMA, said it was extremely important for the organization to bring the awards ceremony back to Calgary this year.

“It’s really appropriate and fair to have a 40th here,” she said.

“This community is absolutely amazing; great fans, incredible talent from here, and obviously it’s also amazing to have the Country Music Hall of Fame here. It just felt like the perfect community to celebrate it.

She said it was also very important to be able to bring fans back to live performances at the CCMA. Especially after two years of pandemic.

“Over the past two years I have been truly moved by how everyone has managed to stay together and uplift each other, but to be back in person and together just means the world to us. all.”

2022 awards host president Ben Graham said there was demand from fans to return to in-person events.

“It’s going to be a big problem. The number of fans who will come to town to participate in this, we’ve seen at other shows so far a huge demand, whether it’s the Flames games or the Edmonton Oilers,” he said. he declares.

“So I think it’s going to be a really good week, not just culminating at the Saddledome, but in all the venues that are going to be full.”

A big boost for the local economy

Mayor Jyoti Gondek said nothing beats artists reconnecting with Calgarians in person.

“I’ve spent time talking with a lot of artists, including musicians and performers during the pandemic, and of course I’ve had these conversations on Zoom and (Microsoft) Teams, and it’s really hard . It’s hard to do the performance and not see it land with people,” she said.

Mayor Gondek spoke about the impact this will have on the city’s hospitality industry. Overall, the CCMAs are expected to generate over $12 million for the city’s GDP.

“Being able to host returning events is great for the economy and for all those business owners. It doesn’t matter that we have Stampede coming up,” she said.

“Being a host city is essential for our city, especially for events like this, when you think about the arts and culture scene and what it does to provide a great quality of life for people. »

She said the benefits go beyond the $12 million to make Calgary an attractive place to live. It also allows employers to attract the talent needed to fill jobs in the economy.

“People who want to live in Calgary also want the opportunity to play here. It’s events like this that make it happen,” she said.

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