First-time event planned for Latin Grammys

HOUSTON Joel Osteen may not be someone you'd automatically associate with the Latin Grammys, but this year his name and church are front and center as organizers try something that's never been done before.

In just three weeks, thousands of Latin music fans will pack Lakewood Church as the Latin music awards makes history in Houston.

"Because of the size and the audience that we have here in Houston, it was a perfect fit," explained Jackelyn Viera Iloff of Lakewood Church.

For the first time since the award show started, organizers are holding a Christian music concert leading up to the show -- the headliner, Latin Grammy winner and Lakewood preacher Marcos Witt. He'll be joined by a star studded ensemble, including Pablo Olivares, Roberto Orellana, and Israel Houghton. At least one Christian music fan we spoke with says she likes the change.

Chevonne Ricketts said, "It's huge. I don't think people realize exactly how big it is. It's huge."

The Christian concert is just one of the many events planned before the show. On September 18th, the music in the park concert series kicks off at city hall. There are four shows in all, held at local parks by well-known local entertainers.

The party doesn't end there. On November 2nd, Reliant Park becomes the home of the Houston es Musica Festival. It's a mega party featuring live performances and family activities.

Latin Grammy Host Committee Chairperson Sonya Garza said, "We're going to have multi stages. We're going to have a variety of both local talent and talent that we're bringing in particularly for this event."

It all leads up to the main event -- the award show on November 13, which is expected to draw talent from across the world, and this year, a bit of spirituality too.

"Keep in mind this isn't just for Latin community," Garza stressed. "It's for lovers of Latin music and wonderful music."

Tickets for the Christian concert at Lakewood are already on sale. Prices start at $15. The award show itself airs November 13th, live from the Toyota Center.

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