Nicole Scherzinger gushes over meeting childhood theater idol Lea Salonga
Nicole Scherzinger is proving she’s no stranger to musicals. The Filipina-American singer is receiving critical acclaim for what’s being dubbed as her career-defining performance as Norma Desmond in the stripped-down West End revival of “Sunset Boulevard.” And just a few days ago, the star was gushing over another Filipino musical star showing up to support the show: Lea Salonga.
Scherzinger shared a photo of herself and Salonga with the caption, “My heart is full. I got to meet my childhood theatre idol, Miss Saigon herself, Lea Salonga. Thank you for coming to our show, ‘Sunset Boulevard.’”
The production runs through Jan. 6, 2024 at the Savoy Theater. Director Jamie Lloyd’s stripped-back version of the classic story following former silent screen era star Norma Desmond’s descent into madness comes as an unusual deviation without the haunting splendor of Desmond’s mansion and flowing garments.
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While Nicole Scherzinger leads barefoot in a black slip dress, critics say she was still able to capture Desmond’s captivating yet chilling allure and emotional force. The New York Times writes, “Scherzinger nails Norma’s two showstoppers—one in each act—shedding sunglasses as she lifts the defiant “With One Look” to the rafters and beyond.
That number’s second-act equivalent, “As If We Never Said Goodbye,” sung during a deluded Norma’s return to Paramount Pictures, begins plaintively, even tenderly, before building to a mighty roar.
Nicole Scherzinger extends her long, sinuous arms in the direction of the audience like talons toward prey.” Critics also note that her previous West End role as Grizabella in “Cats” may have come in handy while preparing for this show.
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What did Salonga make of the production? The star of the controversial “Here Lies Love” Broadway show has yet to publicly share her thoughts. But if Scherzinger’s post is anything to go by, we can hazard a guess that she gave Scherzinger praise.