Will Panelist Nicole Scherzinger Be Back on 'The Masked Singer'?

"It's been always nothing but love, and so it's been amazing to be able to fill her very high heels,” shared Nicole’s replacement.

Brandon Charles - Author

Mar. 6 2024, Published 5:53 p.m. ET

Nicole Scherzinger on Season 10 of 'The Masked Singer'
Source: Fox

The popular Fox singing/costume program The Masked Singer is returning for Season 11. Since premiering in 2019 the show has been a bona fide hit, with ten seasons airing in just four years.

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Host Nick Cannon and longtime panelists Robin Thicke, Jenny McCarthy-Wahlberg, and Ken Jeong will have a new unmasked face joining them in 2024 — a face that will be unmasked from the beginning of the season.

Nicole Scherzinger on 'The Masked Singer'
Source: Fox
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Is Nicole Scherzinger coming back to 'The Masked Singer'?

The news of Nicole Scherzinger's departure from the popular competition show was announced on Sep. 13, 2023. The former Pussycat Dolls member left the show for musical reasons. A literal musical reason.

Nicole stepped away from her panel position to star in Andrew Lloyd Weber’s Sunset Blvd. in London. Speaking with The New York Times for an Oct. 7. 2023 profile, the performer said, “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.”

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Later in the piece, Andrew Lloyd Weber himself raves about Nicole. “I believe she is one of the most gifted singer-actresses I have seen perform my work,” Andrew said. “It’s a tough role, but Nicole is fearless musically and dramatically. I am a total fan.”

Source: YouTube
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Based on commercial and critical success, it seems like Nicole’s decision to step away from The Masked Singer was a good decision. Her work was praised by critics; The New York Times called the performance captivating in a separate review. The 2023 production went on to win seven WhatsOnStage Awards, the UK’s major theatre awards. Nicole took home the award for Best Performer in a Musical.

Later this year, the production will be coming to Broadway.

Rita Ora — Nicole’s replacement on 'The Masked Singer' — is well prepared for masks and singing.

At the same time the show announced Nicole's exit they shared the news that Rita Ora would be joining the panel. Rita has been a panelist on The Masked Singer UK since the British version debuted in January 2020. When Nicole left Los Angeles to be on stage in the UK, the LA show brought in a UK based performer.

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In a Feb. 26, 2024 piece on Entertainment Weekly, Rita was asked if she was able to chat with Nicole about filling her seat. "Not really," Rita began. "I think she was very busy on Broadway and on West End. That's a lot of work and a lot of shows per night. But we've crossed paths in the past through the industry, and it's been always nothing but love, and so it's been amazing to be able to fill her very high heels."

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masked singer season 11
Source: FOX

Will Nicole be a panelist for Season 12?

As of this writing there's been no announcement if and when Nicole will return to The Masked Singer — but there's also no announcement for a Season 12. Season 11 was announced in September 2023 and begins airing March 2024. Based on that timeline and the other renewal announcement, any news of a Season 12 and panelists is most likely going to come with two weeks left in the current season, so sometime in May. In the meantime, you can watch new episodes live on Fox Wednesday nights and Hulu the next day.

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