Mayor Bill de Blasio, Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment Commissioner Julie Menin, and NYC & Company President & CEO Fred Dixon joined MTV in announcing that the 2016 “MTV Video Music Awards” will return to New York City, airing live from Madison Square Garden for the first time in the show’s 33-year history on Sunday, August 28th. Commissioner Menin was on hand for the announcement at the MTV Upfronts presentation in Midtown Manhattan on Thursday evening.


“We are excited that MTV will bring the VMAs back to its original home of New York City,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “From the red carpet to the accolades to the performances – and everything in between – the VMAs are an incredible showcase for so many talented artists. It also goes without saying that hosting the awards in our City means a boost to our small businesses and restaurants and more jobs for the thousands of crew members who work to bring the show into homes around the world.”

“The VMAs at MSG is a New York story too good to resist,” said Sean Atkins, President of MTV. “The VMA’s deliver some of pop culture’s most defining moments and we’re grateful to our New York home and Madison Square Garden for rolling out the red carpet for what is sure to be the biggest night in music. You can be assured we are going put on a show that celebrates the city and that creates yet another seminal moment in music history at this iconic venue.”

“From its top-class performers to its world-renowned venues, NYC reflects everything the entertainment industry has to offer – and makes us a natural fit to host the VMAs,” said Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment Commissioner Julie Menin. “And beyond the entertainment value of the show itself, the financial benefit of this event on small businesses is significant. We are grateful to have the VMAs back in New York this year, as it presents huge opportunities for shops, restaurants, and retailers across the City.”

The economic impact of the VMAs in New York City is tremendous, between the significant number of out-of-town visitors expected, the jobs created by the show, and the millions of dollars MTV expects to directly spend with local small businesses and vendors. Having the VMAs and events like it in New York City are not just opportunities for world-class entertainment, but significant revenue-generating events that ultimately benefit all New Yorkers.

In celebration of the VMAs in NYC, the Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment (MOME) and MTV are partnering for the first time on a new video contest for New Yorkers ages 16 and over. Contestants will be asked to create a 30-second video answering the question: “If you could take your favorite VMA artist anywhere in NYC, where would it be and why?” Up to five winners will have the opportunity to attend the VMAs and to walk the red carpet along with some of today’s biggest stars, and their videos will be shared on some of NYC’s official social media channels. Up to 75 runners-up will also receive an opportunity to visit MTV, learn about its programming and take a tour of the network’s studios, courtesy of Viacom. Full contest details will be made available in June.

The 2016 VMAs will mark the 16th time the music awards show has aired from New York City, including most recently the 2013 MTV VMAs at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center, which featured world-renowned recording artists including Justin Timberlake, Miley Cyrus, and Robin Thicke. New York is home to MTV’s corporate headquarters and is the original home of the VMAs, with the first-ever show taking place in 1984 at Radio City Music Hall.

The MTV VMA show stands as the most tweeted non-sports television program of all time with 21.4 million tweets, according to Nielsen Social. In 2015, the show generated more than 73 million views across all platforms in its first 72 hours.

“We are delighted to welcome the MTV Music Video Awards back to New York City. As a global hub for creativity, entertainment and culture, New York City is the ideal host for this event,” said Fred Dixon, President and CEO of NYC & Company. “As we have seen from the 2015 VMAs, this event is a dynamic media engine which will only be enhanced by the global spotlight NYC attracts. Visitors and event organizers will be reminded that this is the most creative, experiential destination in the world.”

“We are thrilled to welcome the “MTV Video Music Awards” to the World’s Most Famous Arena for the first time,” said David O’Connor, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Madison Square Garden Company. “Madison Square Garden has been known throughout its history for inspiring the greatest performers, sports icons to break records and make history, and we have no doubt that the MTV VMAs – so celebrated for its exciting and unexpected mix of music and entertainment – will add an unforgettable chapter to that unparalleled legacy.”

The VMAs will benefit from Madison Square Garden’s recent three-year, top-to-bottom transformation, which significantly enhances the experience of everyone who walks through the Garden’s doors. Highlights include a breathtaking Chase Square entrance; new arena seating with improved sightlines; expanded concourses with city views; and food offerings from some of the world’s best chefs; new clubs and suites; and a state-of-the-art GardenVision center-hung multimedia display.