The variety show is back, people! America’s Got Talent entered its 10th season last month, Ninja Warrior is the TV addiction of more than just fitness fanatics, and Neil Patrick Harris announced his variety show Best Time Ever will debut this fall. There’s one more that’s getting buzz, too: I Can Do That on Tuesdays at 10/9c on NBC, a show where six celebrities challenge themselves to quirky talent contests every week. Last night, the second of six episodes debuted, which showed Nick Jonas and Cheryl Burke take on the Jabbawockeez, Alan Ritchson and Jeff Dye work a performance routine with a little dog, and Ciara and Nicole Scherzinger rock The Quiddlers act. It’s ridiculous and funny, which is just what the stars/contestants want—to keep things light and fun.
We caught up with Scherzinger over the phone yesterday to get the down-low. Turns out, she’s a huge variety show fan. “I loved the Laugh-In and Sonny & Cher, where you got to see celebrities being vulnerable, trying new things, being funny, and not taking themselves seriously,” Scherzinger told us. “I think it’s so much more interesting and more fun than just watching people do the same thing. For so long we’ve had these talent search shows where celebrities are critiquing and judging. It’s refreshing to see a show that’s comedic and crazy and to see celebrities put themselves in situations that you’d never thought you’d see.”
With her love of variety shows locked down, she went into I Can Do That with an open mind, like episode one’s aerial water dancing. “I thought it would be really fun and it would get to show another side of me,” she told us. “I’m quite a goofball and I love to try new things, so I thought why not?” As for shooting the show, it was an intense six-week schedule. “People won’t see the extra hours that I put in,” she said. “They just don’t see how hard we really are working. We’re always thinking that we only have so much time to get this together in front of everyone.”
What helped, of course, was camaraderie between her five other co-stars and host Marlon Wayans. “We’re all pretty tight,” she said. “I feel like Alan is like the male version of me and I just adore his wife. The people that I worked the closest with were Joe and Alan—you’ll see in the finale what happens. And I’m a girl’s girl, so I love CiCi and Cheryl, and Jeff cracks me up. We’re a really good family together.”
With four episodes left, Scherzinger promises the best is yet to come. “There is a challenge toward the end of the competition and that pushed me out of my comfort zone the most,” she said. “When I was chosen to be a partner in it, I didn’t think I could do it. But I did it. I feel like once I did it, I could do anything. That is what’s so great and inspiring about the show. Hopefully, when other people watch it, they’ll be inspired to go out there and try something new.”
I Can Do That airs Tuesdays at 10/9c on NBC.