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Ryan Seacrest Prepares for BTS Mania Ahead of New Year’s Eve Times Square Celebration

New Year’s Eve will be much dryer than last year’s festivities in New York City, and revelers may have Lucy Hale to thank. The cohost of ABC’s “Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest,” which airs Tuesday, Dec. 31 live starting at 8 p.m. east coast time, says, “I’m bringing the good weather.”

As viewers may recall, Hale endured the elements while serving as a correspondent in New Orleans last year, including rain and a fire alarm. “All kinds of things that happen during live television,” Seacrest adds. “She handled it brilliantly and smoothly, and I think everyone saw that. She’s just so comfortable on television, and also we have more resources up here [in New York]. You’re doing a little more on your own down in New Orleans, so we should be great.”

Hale, who’s set to star in the new CW show “Katy Keene,” says all of that prepared her well for her new gig. “I was thinking if this were my first time ever doing some sort of hosting situation, I would be a little more nervous than I am, but I feel good,” she said.

Hale’s promotion was announced soon after ten-time host Jenny McCarthy revealed she was retiring from New Year’s Eve hosting duties to spend the holidays at home. Ciara, fresh off hosting the “American Music Awards” in October, will continue to emcee the Hollywood party broadcast in Los Angeles. Billy Porter, who Seacrest says “[has] got a presence about him,” will be based in New Orleans.

This year marks the 48th anniversary of the annual celebration in Times Square, and the lineup include performers Alanis Morrisette, with the company of the Broadway show “Jagged Little Pill,” K-Pop stars BTS, country star Sam Hunt and Post Malone, who appeared on the show last year with a performance from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

Morrisette’s performance, which is slated to kick off the show, will be particularly exciting because it will offer fans a glimpse of her 2020 tour (she plans to perform her classic album, “Jagged Little Pill,” in its entirety).

“Every single song on that album is amazing,” Seacrest says. “I remember playing [the first single] ‘You Oughta Know’ on the radio when it first came out and it was such a cool, groundbreaking song. It just started with her vocals. There was no intro.”

Amping the excitement is BTS, set to take the stage just after 10:30 p.m. The group first appeared on the show in 2017 with a medley of hits on the West Coast, and tomorrow night’s eight-minute set promises to be equally satisfying. Notes: Seacrest: “We don’t even know what to expect in Times Square with all the people because when they show up, all of their fans show up, so half of Times Square could be BTS fans.”

Ryan Seacrest and boy band BTSKIIS-FM iHeartRadio Jingle Ball, Backstage, The Forum, Los Angeles, USA - 06 Dec 2019
CREDIT: Christopher Polk/Variety/Shutter

Post Malone, celebrating several Grammy nominations, including Record of the Year, will rock just before the midnight hour. “He’s got so many hits,” Seacrest adds. “And this year, he’s here with us live.”

Other performances on the West Coast include Paula Abdul, Kelsea Ballerini, Blanco Brown, Dan + Shay, Green Day, Dua Lipa, Ava Max, Megan Thee Stallion, Anthony Ramos, Salt-N-Pepa, and SHAED. Porter will present Sheryl Crow and Usher, while The Jonas Brothers will give a special performance from Miami.

A returning feature on this year’s broadcast will be courtesy of presenting sponsor YouTube, who will spotlight the top trends of 2019 and will make a “surprise announcement.”

The show will begin at 8 p.m, and will continue way past midnight to 2:13 a.m. With all that music, could Hale, who first met Seacrest as a 14-year-old contestant on the American Idol spinoff “American Juniors,” be tempted to grab a mic? Seacrest is game. “We should really put you on the spot,” Seacrest teases, recalling the time a then-14 year old Hale sang, “Call Me” by Blondie. “When was the last time you sang?

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