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Maren Morris Wins New Artist of the Year at the 2016 CMA Awards

maren morris cma
Michael Loccisano, Getty Images

Maren Morris won New Artist of the Year at the 2016 CMA Awards. The Dallas native burst into tears as soon as presenter Jennifer Garner announced her name, and continued crying throughout her brief speech.

“Y’all! I can’t win this award right after performing, I’m going to fall apart,” she said, referencing the fact that she had just finished roaring through a powerful version of “My Church.”

“This is so crazy,” Morris continued. “I have amazing seats tonight. This is incredible.”

Morris then referenced a story she recently told The Boot in an interview, just a few days ago: “Last year, I sat across the street at a bar and watched this show,” Morris revealed. “I never thought as a songwriter I’d be standing here today. Thank y’all so much for voting for me.”

She then thanked her “songwriting community” in Nashville (“You gave me the courage to do this”) and her parents, whom she said have “supported me ever since I was 11 in this crazy dream.” Morris closed out her time on stage by thanking her manager, Janet, and “my love” Ryan (aka singer-songwriter Ryan Hurd), whom she wished a happy birthday.

Other New Artist of the Year nominees included Kelsea Ballerini, Old Dominion, Brothers Osborne and Cole Swindell.

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