All the times Nicole Scherzinger did theatre

In her Broadway debut, the former Pussycat Doll reprises her award-winning, star turn from London's West End in Andrew Lloyd Webber's musical Sunset Boulevard.

Joe Dziemianowicz
Joe Dziemianowicz

Nicole Scherzinger is ready for her close-up – on Broadway. In fall 2024, she makes her debut there in an eagerly anticipated revival of Sunset Boulevard directed by Jamie Lloyd (A Doll’s House with Jessica Chastain) at the St. James Theatre. As Norma Desmond, a former silent film queen aching for a comeback, Scherzinger shoulders the 1993 Andrew Lloyd Webber musical adapted from the 1950 Billy Wilder movie.

Scherzinger studied musical theatre at Wright State University in Ohio, so center stage is a sweet spot for her. In the early 2000s, she broke through in the girl group Pussycat Dolls. Since their split in 2009, Scherzinger has charted a solo career, judged The Masked Singer and X Factor, and appeared in such films as Moana and Men in Black 3.

All the while, she was honing her performance skills. As we await the curtain rising on Sunset Boulevard on Broadway, learn more about Scherzinger’s past theatre credits.

Check back for information on Sunset Boulevard tickets on New York Theatre Guide.

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At Los Angeles's Hollywood Bowl in 2010, Scherzinger played performance artist Maureen, the role created by Idina Menzel, in director Neil Patrick Harris’s staging of the Pulitzer Prize- and Tony-winning musical. Her costars included Aaron Tveit as Roger and Vanessa Hudgens as Mimi.

The Los Angeles Times review praised Scherzinger and her big moments: “Scherzinger’s powerhouse voice was meant for venues like the Bowl, and she roused the crowd with 'Over the Moon,' the performance art/protest number her character Maureen delivered here like a wildcat.”

The Phantom of the Opera

In 2011, to mark the 25th anniversary of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s global musical sensation The Phantom of the Opera, Scherzinger appeared in a special staging of the show’s title number. Scherzinger played the silver-voiced singer Christine opposite four actors as the mysterious masked Phantom. While it wasn’t a full-fledged theatrical run, it paved the way for more Lloyd Webber/Scherzinger collaborations to come.


And quickly, too. In 2013, Scherzinger wrapped her lustrous voice around Eva Perón’s famous anthem “Don’t Cry for Me Argentina” from Evita in the TV tribute show Andrew Lloyd Webber: 40 Musical Years, which celebrated the composer's many stage hits.

At the end of Scherzinger's performance, Lloyd Webber blew her a kiss, while British star Michael Ball made a prophetic remark: “She’s gonna be the next Broadway star, isn’t she?” Yep. Make that Michael “Crystal” Ball.



In 2014, Scherzinger made her West End debut at the London Palladium as Grizabella in Lloyd Webber’s Tony Award-winning Best Musical drawn from T. S. Eliot’s Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats. Her character is a bedraggled glamour cat who’s seen better days but finds redemption.

Scherzinger “rousingly renders” the forlorn feline’s unforgettable ballad “Memory,” a review on London Theatre reads. The showcase role was originated by Elaine Paige in 1981 in London and Betty Buckley a year later on Broadway. Scherzinger’s performance earned her an Olivier Award nomination.

A new revival of the show (not involving Scherzinger) titled Cats: The Jellicle Ball runs from June 13 to July 14 at the Perelman Performing Arts Center.

Annie Live!

In 2021, some 44 years after the Annie musical debuted on Broadway, Scherzinger sang and danced on a TV special version Annie Live! in the role of secretary Grace Farrell.

Surrounded by Harry Connick Jr. as Daddy Warbucks, Taraji P. Henson as Miss Hannigan, Megan Hilty as Lily St. Regis, and Tituss Burgess as Rooster, Scherzinger was in great company. She could’ve been referring to herself when she belted “I Think I’m Gonna Like It Here.”

Critics liked what they saw. “Scherzinger had one of the evening’s highlights with the dance number ‘We Got Annie,’ a song that originated in the 1982 movie," The New York Times's critic cheered.

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Sunset Boulevard

Scherzinger first tackled the role of Norma Desmond at age 45 at the Savoy Theatre in London's West End in 2023, also under Lloyd's direction. She talked frankly about the dreaded slide from fame to obscurity: "I experienced having my pop star status in my heyday a decade ago," she told London Theatre in 2023. "The feeling of abandonment, loneliness, emptiness, insecurities, fear, overthinking, overanalysing — I tend to do that. I think she does too."

Being back in the spotlight, she's said, is like a hit of pure oxygen. Similarly, Norma sings “I've come home at last” with chill-inducing passion as she imagines making her triumphant return to motion pictures.

Lloyd’s production is streamlined, but critics were maximalist in their praise for Scherzinger, whose part was famously played by Patti LuPone and Glenn Close in years past. “Scherzinger doesn’t just handle the role, she devours it,” reads London Theatre’s five-star review.

Scherzinger won an Olivier Award and an Evening Standard Award for her performance. On Broadway, she’ll be joined by her London co-stars Tom Francis as Joe Gillis, Grace Hodgett-Young as Betty Schaefer, and David Thaxton as Max Von Mayerling.

Check back for information on Sunset Boulevard tickets on New York Theatre Guide.

Originally published on

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