Mayor Ras J. Baraka Welcomes The 2023 MTV Video Music Awards Back To Newark

Ras J. Baraka Video Music Awards

The Lauryn Hill collaborator calls his city “America’s turntable for harmonic expression.”

The 2023 MTV Video Music Awards will return to Newark, New Jersey’s Prudential Center on Tuesday, September 12. Newark will host the annual event for the third time in five years.

“Awarding Newark as host city for the 2023 VMAs echoes not only our selection by MTV in 2022 and 2019, but also reverberates our city’s historic vibe as a hotbed of musical genius,” says Newark Mayor Ras J. Baraka.

The city’s 40th leader adds, “Starting with America’s first known composer in 1759, through the Jazz explosion in the 1920s, and up to today’s full spectrum of genres from Hip Hop to Opera, Newark has long served as America’s turntable for harmonic expression.”

Before becoming a politician, Ras Baraka served as an educator in the Newark Public Schools system. Baraka also contributed to Lauryn Hill’s Grammy-winning 1998 album, The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill, as the narrator of interludes on the album.

“The relevance of the Video Music Awards rising up today from the same city that registered the film and video industry’s first nitrocellulose patent is not lost on me as Newark continues to sit squarely at the crossroads of motion picture and music,” states Mayor Baraka.

The 2023 Video Music Awards Will Broadcast Live To A Global Audience

MTV will air the 2023 Video Music Awards live in more than 150 countries. The network will announce this year’s host, nominees, and performers at a later date. Taylor Swift’s “All Too Well: The Short Film” won Video Of The Year in 2022.

“The return of the VMAs to the Prudential Center testifies to New Jersey’s enduring standing as a premier venue for large-scale entertainment events,” said New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy. “As the home of some of the most internationally renowned names in the music industry, New Jersey is proud to once again partner with Paramount to showcase an array of exciting performances to a global audience.”

Governor Murphy continues, “By hosting this highly anticipated spectacle, our state and local economies will also benefit from the thousands of visitors who will shop, dine, and stay in our local communities.” New Jersey has produced VMA winners such as Lauryn Hill, Bruce Springsteen, Whitney Houston, and Jonas Brothers.

Stand-up comedian/The Irishman actor Sebastian Maniscalco hosted the 2019 Video Music Awards at the Prudential Center. Jack Harlow, LL Cool J, and Nicki Minaj co-hosted the 2022 edition of the ceremony in the same venue.