Get Your Popcorn Ready, Because The BBMAs Are Longer Than You'd Expect

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Before the newest summer hits debut on the radio, it's only right to reflect on some of the past year's catchiest music, and what better way to do that than by watching the Billboard Music Awards? Awarding artists and songs based on popularity, streaming figures, and sales rather than votes, this year's ceremony is slated to deliver an epic concert, but how long are the 2019 Billboard Music Awards? The May 1 ceremony is scheduled to last at least three hours.

Hosted by Kelly Clarkson for the second consecutive year, the Billboard Music Awards will begin at 8 p.m. ET on Wednesday, May 1, on NBC. The network's schedule currently has the event penned in until local news begins at 11 p.m., but the ceremony running overtime is always a possibility. After all, when is there not a long-winded acceptance speech or technical gaffe at an award show? Including the two hours of live red carpet footage from 6 to 8 p.m. on E!, the BBMAs seem destined to be a long night.

This year, Clarkson will also perform her new single in addition to reprising hosting duties at the Billboard Music Awards' Las Vegas venue. In a statement, the former American Idol star said, "I had so much fun hosting the Billboard Music Awards last year that I’m back for more. We’re turning it up a notch this year and I can’t wait to celebrate all of my fellow amazing artists for another unforgettable night of live music."

Clarkson kicks off a promising lineup of other musical performances including Dan + Shay, Ciara, Halsey, BTS, and Madonna, who will debut new music for the first time in over four years. Singing their beloved single "Sucker," the Jonas Brothers will also appear in their first televised award show performance in 10 years. That's an act worth "burnin' up" for, right?

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The event will also celebrate Mariah Carey as the recipient of the BBMAs' Icon Award, welcoming her to the stage to perform a medley of her hit music. While award shows like the Grammys often bring attention to more obscure music that is trickier to find on the radio, the BBMAs reward artists who dominate the Billboard charts thanks to their songs' frequent airplay. According to Billboard, Carey's music led the Hot 100 charts in each year of the 1990s, making her the only artist to achieve such. A true "Hero," indeed.

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In addition to Carey's legendary night, rapper Cardi B will hit the BBMAs red carpet with 21 nominations, making her the most recognized artist this year. She's even competing against herself in three different categories, but the show's lengthy list of awards and their nominees implies that viewers will likely see plenty of their favorite performers reach the stage. Well, with the ceremony due to last three hours, we can only hope that we'll see enough glimpses of both winners and losers as the Billboard Music Awards continue.

Start stretching now before you plop on the couch for this broadcast. The 2019 Billboard Music Awards air on Wednesday, May 1, at 8 p.m. ET on NBC.