Prepare for a Canadian Country Music Awards host like no other



“I am so ready to make history. ”

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I’m not sure country music will ever be the same after meeting Priyanka.


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The Canadian drag queen brings her talents to Budweiser Gardens in London on Monday as co-host with Lindsay Ell of the Canadian Country Music Association awards ceremony.

And if a 15-minute phone conversation with the duo is any indication, country music fans had better get ready for something special, fun, and maybe even a little wild.

“I’m so excited,” Priyanka said. “I love country music. I think people are going to be shocked to see me come out. . . but I am definitely the perfect choice. I have the chops to do it. I think it’s amazing. . . . I am so ready to make history.

Priyanka, real name Mark Suknanan, won the first season of Canada’s Drag Race in 2020, but was already an established TV personality as Mark Suki, host of the children’s series The Zone and the reality TV series. The Next Star by YTV.


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CCMA President Amy Jeninga said Priyanka is “an amazing talent who has had an amazing year”, referring to Priyanka who was chosen as the host of the Pride Toronto Virtual Edition, as the director of the community impact for Vizzy Hard Seltzer and featured artist in Drag Fest, a live music festival.

Priyanka is also a songwriter and released a dance / pop EP, Taste Test, in July.

“On top of that, outside of drag, she has years of experience hosting with our broadcast partner, Corus, and we really think she’s going to bring an energy to the show that fans go to. worship, “Jeninga wrote in an email. .

Jeninga said there was no fear of a fan backlash.

“From the start, we were confident that our community would welcome diversity and support this announcement and it did,” Jeninga said.


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“We know our community values ​​and celebrates talent above all else and Priyanka’s talent is undeniable. . . . The response to this announcement has been overwhelmingly positive – we’ve never had so much enthusiasm around a host announcement. So yeah, I think country fans are more than ready to welcome the LGBTQ2S + community with open arms.

Ell, meanwhile, is an award-winning Canadian country music star who plays guitar and is nominated for five CCMA awards, including Album of the Year (Heart Theory), Female Artist, Interactive Artist, Song of of the year (Good on You with Sam Ellis and Micah Premnath) and the video of the year.

“I can’t think of a better person to welcome into our country music family,” said Ell, who is taking a break from her first headlining tour to host the show after performing at Rum Runners in London on Friday. .


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“I can’t wait for people to experience all the genius Priyanka brings and I am very, very proud of the CCMA for taking such a progressive step that many other organizations need to take. “

The co-hosts seem to have a natural chemistry, with the jokes and laughter coming quickly.

“I feel so excited to host, and maybe a little bit of singing, dancing,” said Priyanka, whose glamorous personality threatens to make Ell naturally and very attractive a bit ordinary.

“I am delighted to congratulate all of the winning artists when they come off the stage and maybe I can find a husband.”

“Maybe we can be each other’s wingman,” Ell joked.

She expects the audience to be entertained, but also excited.

“After two full years of not being together, we’re going to be together again and celebrate all of these artists who really worked so hard,” she said.


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“I’m pinching myself again. I’m just really and deeply grateful to host this show for all of my peers I’ve always admired. I’m just humbled, but it’s gonna be an amazing night to celebrate country music. “

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Weekend highlights

  • Fanfest at CCMA House at 2 p.m. Saturday, which gives fans the chance to meet Canadian country music stars including The Reklaws, Tenille Arts, Jade Eagleson, Tyler Joe Miller, MacKenzie Porter, Brad Rempel of High Valley and Dallas Smith
  • CCMA House House Party at 6 p.m. Saturday with performances by Shawn Austin, Tim Hicks, High Valley, Andrew Hyatt, JoJo Mason, Tyler Joe Miller, Jess Moskaluke, Steven Lee Olsen, MacKenzie Porter, Dallas Smith and Tim and The Glory Boys
  • CCMA HOUSE Unplugged Sessions Sunday starting at 12 p.m. with performances by James Barker, Jade Eagleson, Madison Kozak, Griffen Palmer and The Reklaws followed by a second session at 2 p.m. with Tenille Arts, Aaron Goodwin, Robyn Ottolini, Brad Rempel from High Valley and Tenille Townes
  • CCMA Awards Show red carpet at Budweiser Gardens at 5:30 p.m. Monday
  • CCMA Awards Show, Monday at Budweiser Gardens at 8 p.m. hosted by Lindsay Ell and Priyanka, with performances by Tenille Arts, Ell, Tim Hicks, High Valley, JoJo Mason, Tyler Joe Miller, Jess Moskaluke. Robyn Ottolini, Dallas Smith, MacKenzie Porter and Dustin Lynch, The Reklaws with Sacha (they recorded What the Truck together) and Tenille Townes.

If you are going to

What : Canadian Country Music Association Country Music Week.
When : Until Monday.
Or : London Music Hall (nicknamed CCMA House), RBC Place and Budweiser Gardens.
Tickets : Visit Where . Watch the show Monday at 8 p.m. live on Global TV App and Prime Video.




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