If you’re going to stage a country awards show in Texas, it’s state law that George Strait must perform. Well, maybe not, but when the Academy of Country Music announced the initial lineup of performers for the 50th ACM Awards held April 19th in Arlington, Texas, the Lone Star State icon was front and center. The performance marks the first time Strait has played AT&T Stadium, the site of this year’s ceremonies, since his final Cowboy Rides Away show last June.
Along with Strait, who was named Entertainer of the Year at last year’s show, Jason Aldean, Garth Brooks, Dierks Bentley, Kenny Chesney, Eric Church, Miranda Lambert, Reba McEntire, Keith Urban and Florida Georgia Line are all set to take the stage. Blake Shelton and Luke Bryan, who return to co-host the ACMs, will also perform.
And in a nod to the genre’s rising talent, the New Artist of the Year nominees — Sam Hunt, Thomas Rhett and Cole Swindell — will also get a few minutes in the spotlight.
Normally held in Las Vegas, the ACM Awards move to Texas this year to celebrate their 50th show, which will be broadcast live on CBS from the stadium home of the Dallas Cowboys. Lambert leads all nominees with eight nominations.
The Entertainer of the Year field is particularly diverse this year, as veteran Garth Brooks competes with Jason Aldean, Luke Bryan, Miranda Lambert and first-time Entertainer nominees Florida Georgia Line.