AMERICAN Idol needed a shake-up. The jury may be out on whether the changes to the format have worked, but most agree something had to be done as the show entered its 12th season.
Nicki Minaj was one of the additions to the show that producers hoped would resonate with fans. What have been your best and worst moments on Idol? My best and worst Idol moments . . . I don’t have a worst moment. I’ve been spectacular. Yes, I’m going to toot my own horn. My best moment is every single moment. I’ll toot it again. Alot of people have said, ‘When I started watching Idol with Nicki Minaj, I wasn’t really familiar with who she was’. Do you feel you’ve won new fans? I feel like my entire career and life I’ve been judged by people who really did not know me. They probably were right to assume what they had assumed about me because there was such little to go on. I’m just happy producers gave me a shot to be able to show who I really was because I feel like I’m every single woman. I really don’t think, outside of some pink wigs, that there’s anything that separates me from every other woman in
America. I am absolutely just being me (on Idol). I didn’t know what to expect going into the show. I was so nervous. I had a lot of anxiety. I felt like, ‘OK, I know everybody’s just going to hate me. Oh well’. There were moments in the audition process that I would say to the producers, ‘I can’t do this anymore because if everyone is going to give good critique and I’m going to be the only one being honest, then America is going to hate me. I’m going to be seen as mean’. And the producer said, ‘Nicki, trust me, America is going to appreciate the honesty’ and that’s all I had to go on. If I’m polarising, I’m polarising. One of the things you seem to focus on with the contestants is not just their performance, but their look. Is that just as important as the performance? When you go out into the real world as an artist you may want to think about it. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with thinking about how you want to look. I also think that they need to hear criticism on their look on the show because that’s what they’re going to be criticised on in the real world. They’re going to see themselves on the worst-dressed list or best-dressed list. If asked to return next season to Idol, would you? I like to save the mystery and the drama. I never give that away, but I say from the bottom ofmy heart that the people behind the scenes at Idol have been like a dream to work with. American Idol, Channel 10, Friday, 8.30pm