Why Did Nicole Scherzinger Leave ‘The Masked Singer’? Season 11 Coaching Details

With season 11 of The Masked Singer premiering tonight, fans of the show will notice that Nicole Scherzinger is missing. Although part of the show for some time, the former member of The Pussycat Dolls announced her departure. Needing to find a replacement, the show decided to bring in a singer who has spent time judging on shows like The Voice UK and even The Masked Singer UK. With the new judge joining Jenny McCarthy-Wahlberg, Robin Thicke, and Ken Jeong, here are all the details about tonight’s premiere and the reason why Scherzinger decided to leave. 

Videos by American Songwriter

For starters, Scherzinger decided to leave the show had nothing to do with any drama surrounding The Masked Singer. Having nothing but love for her fellow judges, the singer discussed her reasoning for leaving with the New York Times. She noted her departure came due to gaining a role on the musical Sunset Boulevard in London’s West End. And given that the musical features music by Andrew Lloyd Webber, it makes complete sense why she would leave. 

Although she explained how she wasn’t necessarily drawn to the role, Scherzinger admitted, “But for many years I have been saying I am using a fraction of my potential, and now I feel I have really tapped into that.” She added, “There are many roles I wanted to play in musical theater, but this is not one of them! I wasn’t sure if the idea was flattering or insulting. But Jamie said to me, don’t watch the movie; read the lines, listen to the music. And I fell madly in love with it.”

The Masked Singer Welcomes New Panelist With A Past At Judging

Embodying the role of Norma Desmond in the production, Scherzinger gained high praise from Lloyd Webber himself. “Nicole is one of the finest singers I have worked with, and I can’t wait to get started on this exciting show with her and the rest of this brilliant team.”

[RELATED: ‘Masked Singer’ Winner Ne-Yo Reveals Inspiration Behind Sultry Cow Costume]

As for her replacement on The Masked Singer, that opportunity went to Rita Ora. Having a prosperous career in music and working on similar shows in the past, it seemed only fitting for her to take over. And besides her time in the spotlight, in 2022, Ora decided to share her love with famed director Taika Waititi. Having released her third studio album, You & I, in 2023 and getting married, the singer continues to expand her career on and off the stage. 

For those looking forward to tonight’s premiere, The Masked Singer airs tonight at 8:00 p.m. ET/PT on Fox. Don’t have cable? New episodes can be streamed the following day on Hulu.  

(Photo by Kate Green/Getty Images)

Leave a Reply

The Story Behind “Help Me, Rhonda” by The Beach Boys and Why Brian Wilson Chose Al Jardine to Sing It