Central City Productions today announced that stand-up comedian turned television personality, David Mann, multiple Stellar Award winner, Tamela Mann, and syndicated radio personality Rickey Smiley (Dish Nation), will collaborate to co-host the 30th Annual Stellar Gospel Music Awards. The annual salute to Gospel music, The Stellar Awards will be held at its new location, the Las Vegas Orleans Arena on Saturday, March 28, 2015. The Awards and Pre-show will both be held in the Orleans Showroom. The show will air in broadcast syndication on 150 stations in over 125 markets around the country from April 12 through May 3, 2015 and on the TV One network on Easter Sunday, April 5.
The nominees in 27 categories were unveiled today, with gospel superstar and WEtv personality Erica Campbell and Ricky Dillard and New G sharing the top spot as the most nominated artists with ten nominations each. In her first solo project effort, Mary Mary’s Campbell earns ten nominations for “Help,” including “Artist of the Year,” “Song of the Year,” “Albertina Walker Female Vocalist of the Year,” “CD of the Year,” “Contemporary Female vocalist of the Year,” “Contemporary CD of the Year,” and “Urban /Inspirational Single or Performance of the Year.” The project also received nominations in the categories of “Producer of the Year,” “Music Video of the Year,” and “Recorded Music Packaging of the Year.” Ricky Dillard and New G’s “Amazing” tied “Help” for the most recognition with nominations for “Artist of the Year,” “Song of the Year,” “Male Vocalist of the Year,” “CD of the Year,” “Producer of the Year,” “Traditional Male Vocalist of the Year,” “Traditional CD of the Year,” “Choir of the Year,” “Traditional Choir of the Year,” and “Recorded Music Packaging of the Year.”
Another artist to receive multiple nominations is The Walls Group with eight nominations. Gospel music luminary Kirk Franklin goes head-to-head against himself in the “Producer of the Year” category for the projects of both his protégés, Tasha Page-Lockhart and The Walls Group. Gospel chart-topper and reality television star/producer Deitrick Haddon earns seven nominations for his project Deitrick Haddon’s LXW including “Male Vocalist of the Year,” “Choir of the Year,” “Contemporary CD of the Year,” and “Urban /Inspirational Single or Performance of the Year.” Other artists earning multiple nominations include Arkansas Gospel Mass Choir, Smokie Norful and Michelle Williams.
Hailed as “gospel music’s biggest night,” this year’s Stellar Gospel Music Awards features live performances by The Walls Group, Tasha Page-Lockhart, Mali Music, Deitrick Haddon’s LXW, and Beverly Crawford among others.
The Stellar Awards will also present five special categories highlighting the top radio stations serving urban Gospel music audiences nationwide. The awards honor terrestrial radio and internet programs that broadcast Gospel music, including the top Gospel Announcer of the Year.
“I am pleased that God has blessed us with the staying power of the Stellar Awards brand, and we are celebrating our 30-year anniversary as the most respected name in Gospel music and in the faith-based community today,” says Don Jackson, founder & Executive Producer of the Stellar Awards. “Our 2015, 30th anniversary ‘Stellars’ will give thanks to those who have contributed to the success of the Stellar Awards in tribute and in song, bringing back some of the greatest names in the genre as well as featuring many of the nominated artists of 2015. I am also grateful that Central City Productions, the producers of the Stellar Awards will be celebrating 45 years in business as one of the leading television production companies in the media industry.”
In addition to recognizing the year’s most outstanding contributions in gospel music, The Stellar Awards will also bestow special honors upon President Barack Obama with the Thomas A. Dorsey Most Notable Achievement Award and Bishop Paul Morton with the James Cleveland Lifetime Achievement Award. Andrae Crouch and Al “The Bishop” Hobbs will be celebrated posthumously for their significant contributions to the industry with the Dr. Bobby Jones Legends Award.
The taping at The Orleans Arena is open to the public, and tickets are on sale now through (www.orleansarena.com). Ticket prices range from $50 – $200. Special student pricing for balcony seating is available for $35. In addition to the awards ceremony, there are a number of ancillary activities that celebrate and recognize outstanding achievement in the genre which are open to the public: the Stellar Awards Pre-Show is held on Friday, March 27 at 7 pm and the Stellar Gospel Radio Awards and Showcase on Saturday, March 28 at 11 am; both events require the purchase of a $30 ticket.