O’Donnell to host Grammys

Thesp brought big numbers to '99 b'cast

Rosie O’Donnell has been tapped for an encore bow as host of this year’s Grammy Awards, to be telecast by CBS on Feb. 23 from the Staples Center in Los Angeles.

The Emmy-winning talkshow host-actress presided over last year’s 41st annual telecast, which garnered the show’s second-highest rating (16.6/26) in more than six years. Although O’Donnell is not exactly a part of the music industry, she appeared as Rizzo in Tommy Tune’s Broadway revival of the musical “Grease” and considers herself a big fan of many of the artists that the Grammys honor.

“From the moment Rosie first appeared on the Grammy stage last year, it was apparent she was loved by the audience and throughout the evening she demonstrated her passion for the music,” said Michael Greene, president of the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences. “As an avid fan of the nominees and performers, she brings credibility to the show and connects in a most unique way with the television audience.”

Leading the nominations for the 42nd annual Grammy Awards are veteran rocker Carlos Santana with 10 nods, and rappers TLC with six. Pierre Cossette will exec produce the telecast; Walter Miller will direct.

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