Black Girl Magic: Keke Palmer Becomes First Black Woman To Host MTV Video Music Awards

By Duchess Magazine

Lauren Keyana “Keke” Palmer made history when she hosted the 2020 MTV Video Music Awards on Sunday, August 30. Keke became the first black woman in history to host the alone. Downtown Julie Brown was the only woman of color to co-host the ceremony in 1986/87.

Born in 1993 in Harvey, Illinois in the US. Palmer’s parents, Sharon and Larry Palmer had both worked as professional actors before settling into full-time jobs. She first sang in a church, but gained exposure performing in a stage show at a Chicago tourist destination.

Keke landed her first film role in “Barbershop 2: Back in Business” in 2004, in which she played the niece of American rapper and actress Queen Latifah. After starring in the film, Keke and her family moved to California in full pursuit of her acting career. 

Keke signed a record deal with Atlantic Records in 2005. Her debut single titled “All My Girlz” is featured in the Akeelah and the Bee soundtrack. On November 18, 2006, she performed at the Home Depot Center in Carson, California, for VH1’s Save the Music Battle of the High School Marching Bands competition, marking her first-ever stadium performance in front of thousands of people.

Instagram/Keke Palmer

The stunner released her debut album “So Uncool” on September 18, 2007, through Atlantic Records. The album reportedly failed to chart on the US Billboard 200, but did chart at number 85 on the R&B chart.

In May 2020, Palmer received a Daytime Emmy Award nomination for Outstanding Entertainment Talk Show Host alongside her ABC’s Strahan, Sara. Keke co-hosts Sara Haines and Michael Strahan. On Friday, August 28, she released Virgo Tendencies, Part 1, her third extended play (EP)

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