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MAY 15 2012

WHITNEY HOUSTON TO BE POSTHUMOUSLY HONORED WITH THE MILLENNIUM AWARD AT “THE 2012 BILLBOARD MUSIC AWARDS”

Jordin Sparks and John Legend to Perform Moving Tribute, With Special Appearance by Bobbi Kristina and Pat Houston


The late Whitney Houston will be honored with the 2012 Billboard Millennium Award. A moving tribute dedicated to Houston will be performed by Jordin Sparks and John Legend as they take the stage to commemorate Houston’s legacy. Houston’s daughter, Bobbi Kristina, and sister-in-law, Pat Houston, will make a special appearance to accept the award in her honor. The award is to be presented at “The 2012 Billboard Music Awards,” hosted by Julie Bowen and Ty Burrell, which airs live from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on SUNDAY, MAY 20 (8:00–11:00 p.m., ET) on the ABC Television Network.

Whitney Houston, undoubtedly one of the biggest female pop stars of all time, set precedent with her accomplishments as a hitmaker that are nothing short of extraordinary. To scratch the surface, Houston became the first artist ever to have seven consecutive singles hit No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100, which is still the record to this day. Four years before the practice became the norm upon the advent of Nielsen SoundScan electronic point-of-sale data, Houston scored the first No. 1 debut on the Billboard 200 for a female performer. She is the only woman that tallied reigns of more than ten weeks with multiple albums and while no other woman has more than one such set, Houston had three: The Bodyguard (20 weeks), Whitney Houston (14 weeks), and Whitney (11 weeks). Her 46 total weeks at the Billboard 200 summit are the most among women, and when Houston’s career-defining remake of Dolly Parton’s “I Will Always Love You” wrapped its 14-week run atop the Billboard Hot 100 in 1993, the song stood as the longest-leading title since the chart’s 1958 inception and became the biggest single in pop music history.

In 1992, Houston made her movie debut in “The Bodyguard” which not only broke box office records worldwide but was ultimately responsible for the biggest-selling motion picture soundtrack album of all time. “The Bodyguard” soundtrack album, featuring six Whitney Houston songs in all, sold more than 42 million copies worldwide. At 17-times platinum in the U.S., it was the biggest-selling motion picture soundtrack album in history. Exhale (Shoop, Shoop) is one of only thirteen songs by women to have debuted at No. 1 in the Billboard Hot 100 history. The song, from the “Waiting to Exhale” soundtrack, opened atop the November 25, 1995 Hot 100. Exhale also led Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs for eight frames, becoming one of Houston’s eight No. 1s on the tally. Houston additionally notched ten leading titles on Adult Contemporary, making her one of just seven artists to reach the double-digit mark in the chart’s 51-year archives. Moreover, Houston’s gospel-soaked soundtrack, The Preacher’s Wife became the biggest-selling gospel album in Billboard chart history.

Houston’s last album, I Look To You, was released in 2009, her first studio album in seven years. The album debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Top 200 chart and has sold over 2.5 million copies worldwide. I Look To You includes a star-studded line-up of producers and writers including Alicia Keys, Swizz Beats, R. Kelly, Akon, Diane Warren, among others. The shadow of Houston’s prodigious technique still looms large over nearly every pop diva and smooth urban soul singer, male or female. She is the recipient of an astounding 411 awards including 6 Grammy Awards, 2 Emmy Awards, 16 Billboard Music Awards, 23 American Music Awards, MTV VMAs, NAACP Image Awards, People’s Choice Awards, BET Awards, and many more. She is the only artist with seven multi-platinum albums with 170 million combined albums, singles, and videos sold worldwide. Singing to audiences on every continent, Houston won her worldwide following the old-fashioned way, digging deep down into her soul as she found common threads with her millions of fans.

In October of 2011, Whitney was able to fulfill her 11 year long wish of bringing the remake of “Sparkle” to the silver screen. Filmed in Detroit in October and November, Whitney got to play Sparkle's mother as well as executive produce the movie. “Sparkle” (with Jordin Sparks in the title role) will be released this year on August 17.

Finalists are based on key fan interactions with music, including album, single and digital sales, airplay, touring, streaming and social interactions on MySpace, Facebook and many of the other most popular online destinations for music. The awards will be based on the reporting period of February 28, 2011 through March 1, 2012.

“The 2012 Billboard Music Awards” is co-executive produced by Richard D. Beckman, CEO Prometheus Global Media and Don Mischer Productions. The special will be shot in high definition and broadcast in 720 Progressive (720P), ABC’s selected HD format, with 5.1 channel surround sound.

Visit www.Billboard.com/BBMA for a complete list of finalists and to apply for media credentials. Music fans can also follow news about the show or related events on Twitter at www.twitter.com/Billboard or Facebook at www.facebook.com/billboard.

The MGM Grand Garden Arena is home to concerts, championship boxing and premier sporting and special events. The Arena offers comfortable seating for as many as 16,800 with excellent sightlines and state-of-the-art acoustics, lighting and sound. Prominent events to date have included world championship fights between Evander Holyfield and Mike Tyson as well as Oscar de la Hoya vs. Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao vs. Juan Manuel Marquez; and concerts by The Rolling Stones, Madonna, Elton John, Bruce Springsteen, Paul McCartney, Bette Midler, George Strait, Janet Jackson, Phil Collins, Billy Joel, U2, Lady Gaga, Sting, Coldplay, Alicia Keys, Jimmy Buffett and the Barbra Streisand Millennium Concert. The MGM Grand Garden Arena also is home to the annual Academy of Country Music Awards, annual Billboard Music Awards and the Frozen Fury NHL pre-season game which features the Los Angeles Kings vs. Colorado Avalanche.

Tickets prices begin at $57.75 for Upper Level, not including applicable service charges and taxes, are now on sale and available at all Las Vegas Ticketmaster locations (select Smith’s Food and Drug Centers and Ritmo Latino). Ticket sales are limited to eight (8) per person. To charge by phone with a major credit card, call Ticketmaster at (800) 745-3000. Tickets also are available for purchase at www.mgmgrand.com or www.ticketmaster.com.

Visit www.Billboard.com/BBMA.com for a complete list of finalists and to apply for media credentials. Music fans can also follow news about the show or related events on Twitter at www.twitter.com/billboarddotcom or Facebook at www.facebook.com/billboard.