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Music

Madonna will be performing at the MTV awards
Awarding the video stars

Hole, Madonna to perform at MTV Video Music Awards

Web posted on: Thursday, September 10, 1998 6:09:50 PM

HOLLYWOOD (CNN) -- In the beginning, there was just MTV, television's answer to radio. "None of us thought that 24 hours of 3-minute video clips would be the thing," claims the network's current-day president, Judy McGrath.

Yet 17 years later, the "thing" isn't just 24 hours a day of video clips. MTV has evolved into a collection of musically themed news, game and entertainment shows, which at any given time are seen by between 1 and 2 million people.

And if the regular shows and the "Spring Breaks" on the beach weren't enough, MTV is also an awards show, which will see its 15th annual telecast Thursday night at 8 p.m. ET/PT. Ben Stiller is slated to host the show, which traditionally has been as much about musicians' antics as the awards they take home at the end of the night.

Ben Stiller takes a moment to talk before assuming his hosting duties

Star-studded roster

Among the stars scheduled to perform live at this year's New York-based ceremony were the much-nominated Madonna, who was tapped for nine awards including best video of the year and best female video for "Ray of Light"; Hole, the Beastie Boys, and the Dave Matthews Band.

And, like last year, TV and movie stars fill the ranks of the presenters. Jennifer Love Hewitt ("Can't Hardly Wait"), Sarah Michelle Gellar of Fox's "Buffy the Vampire Slayer," David Spade (NBC's "Just Shoot Me") and martial arts movie star Jackie Chan were on the list.

While many would argue that the MTV awards are often watched for the offbeat antics that might happen, the winners list has often proved a more accurate reflection of musical merit than the more established Grammy Awards, which in recent years have been harshly criticized for handing awards out to bubblegum, commercial acts.

Last year's top MTV Video Music Award winner, for example, was the eclectic, hard-to-pigeonhole Beck, who took home five of the cable channel's odd-looking silver-astronaut trophies.

Correspondent Ron Tank contributed to this report.

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