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2012 Billboard Music Awards to Honor Donna Summer, Adam ‘MCA’ Yauch + Whitney Houston

Donna Summer MCA Whitney Houston
Ethan Miller / Matt Cardy / Larry Busacca, Getty Images

Music lost quite a few greats less than six months into 2012, and the Billboard Music Awards will recognize pop’s fallen stars tonight. The show is slated to feature tributes to Donna Summer, the Beastie Boys‘ Adam ‘MCA’ Yauch and Whitney Houston.

The show’s co-executive producer, Richard Beckman, dished on the details of the tributes — though in the case of Summer’s seemingly sudden passing, some were scarce, as they hadn’t been finalized.

“I was at the Grammys, and what a curveball they were thrown when Whitney passed away [the day before the show],” Beckman told The Hollywood Reporter. “They did a good job with Jennifer Hudson, but obviously we had a bit more time, so we wanted to do something honoring such a remarkable performer. We have a lovely segment with a full orchestra and John Legend doing ‘The Greatest Love of All’ — his voice is just smashing — and Whitney’s last co-star [in the movie 'Sparkle'], Jordin Sparks, ‘Doing I Will Always Love You.’ And Bobbi Kristina, Whitney’s daughter, will accept the Millennium Award for her mother, which we created last year for Beyonce — that’s probably the highest tribute we could pay.”

“We’re going to do something for Adam, and for Donna too,” Beckman added. “Given that it only happened yesterday (May 18), there’s not a lot of room to get too creative, but they’re both great influences in music and they deserve to be respected.”

The 2012 Billboard Music Awards will air tonight (May 20) at 8 PM on ABC.

Get the Latest Details on Donna Summer's Death

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