Ariana Grande has appeared in Studio 8H before, but she’ll be hosting for the first time while pulling double duty on this week’s Saturday Night Live.
The singer is preparing for the launch of her newest album, Dangerous Woman, as she makes her way to the hallowed halls of SNL, and she’ll have a chance to perform new tracks from the album while showing off her comedic chops come 11:29 p.m. Grande performed as a musical guest last season in the Chris Pratt-hosted season 40 opener, cameoing in a He-Man sketch during that episode.
But here she’ll have the whole night to herself, putting to use both sides of her career as the season’s second host to also perform (Miley Cyrus covered both bases during the season premiere).
While in recent years Grande has become most known for her musical career, she of course rose to prominence because of her starring role on Nickelodeon’s Victorious. Her breakthrough role helped the star gain notoriety before launching her musical career. Of course, she hasn’t entirely left acting since then, perhaps having most notably appeared last year in Fox’s Scream Queens.
So what can we expect from a Grande power hour (and a half)? Well, it’s tough to say, as the episode will likely depend on how much the show and star will want to draw from Grande’s public persona or how much the show will rely on her musical talents during sketches. (Musicians can make surprisingly great hosts, as Bruno Mars did with a few sterling sketches from his hosting gig in season 38 — even without an acting résumé — so Grande’s dual experience bodes well.) It would be a shame for DonutGate to not at least be referenced, though it certainly depends on if the show and star want to dredge that back up.
The show will of course likely hit on the continuing 2016 presidential election, though whether it finds a place for Grande to fit in or relies on a mix of current and former SNL castmates will remain a mystery until the show airs.
As for Grande’s musical performances, there is no mystery about what she will be performing for the show’s musical interludes. Grande announced the tracks she plans to perform off her new album when her hosting stint was revealed.
Discuss the episode — which airs at 11:30 p.m. ET on NBC — in the comments below, and check back Sunday morning for our full recap.
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