Kelsea Ballerini is taking over the 2024 CMT Awards stage — but not every part will be live.

Ballerini, 30, will host the Sunday, April 7, awards ceremony live from Austin’s Moody Center for the fourth time. She will also perform one of her biggest hits, albeit pre-recorded.

“I’m pre-taping my performance in a few days since I am also hosting,” Ballerini quipped via Instagram Story on Monday, April 1, during a fan Q&A session. [Hosting] is like a fun version of running around like a headless chicken. The rest is live, babyyy!”

The Grammy nominee has emceed the CMT Awards since 2021, alongside the likes of Kane Brown and Anthony Mackie. Sunday is the first time she will handle hosting solo.

“I couldn’t be more excited to be back for my 4th year with my CMT family to host this year’s CMT Music Awards in Austin, TX,” Ballerini said in a February statement. “Hosting an awards show that celebrates the music that the fans love most has been an honor and I know this year will be another unforgettable night.”

She is also nominated for two trophies, Video of the Year and CMT Performance of the Year, for her song “If You Go Down (I’m Going Down Too).”

At last year’s ceremony, Ballerini performed “If You Go Down (I’m Going Down Too)” alongside a group of drag queens. The number occurred weeks after Tennessee legislators — who govern Ballerini’s home state — introduced a bill that would ban public “adult cabaret performances” in front of children.

“I love performance and I love self-expression and I love inclusivity,” she told Entertainment Tonight in April 2023 after the show wrapped.

GLAAD subsequently praised Ballerini’s set.

“As LGBTQ rights are being questioned in Texas, Tennessee, and several Southern states, Kelsea Ballerini took to one of country music’s biggest stages to display bold allyship by proudly featuring talented and beloved drag artists,” Anthony Allen Ramos, who is the Vice President of Communications & Talent for the nonprofit, said in a statement. “Kelsea’s performance at the CMT Music Awards reinforced that drag is not a threat, it’s an art. New legislation that tries to silence drag performers in some Southern states is as unpopular as it is unnecessary.”

Ramos added: “Country music stars are using their platforms to stand with the LGBTQ community and the industry is growing into an explicitly welcoming place for LGBTQ fans and talent. Other country music stars, concerts, and events should take note of CMT’s inclusion and follow suit.”

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