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within the group and they dis­banded in 2009.

She con­tin­ued to pur­sue her pop solo ca­reer, but a lu­cra­tive side-hus­tle emerged when she was signed up as a judge of the short­lived American talent show

in late 2009.

She won sea­son 10 of

and then was courted to co-host the launch se­ries of

switch­ing to the judg­ing panel to re­place Ch­eryl Cole.

supremo Si­mon Cow­ell then shifted her to the UK franchise to take Kelly Row­land’s va­cant spot.

Her pop­u­lar­ity and rap­port with au­di­ences has kept her in tele­vi­sion jobs ever since, in­clud­ing the fi rst sea­son of the bonkers new format

which will launch here soon on Ten.

Scherzinge­r says it took some time to feel com­fort­able with the switch from pop artist to pre­sen­ter.

“I think it took me a few years to get re­ally com­fort­able and come into my own, and also to be a great ambassador for artists and con­tes­tants now I was on the other side,” she says.

“At the same time, de­spite what some might think or at­tempt to stereo­type me as, I am down-toearth, I’m ex­tremely re­lat­able and I was fi nally able to show­case the other side of who I am, my sense of hu­mour and how I want to serve and give back to others. I re­ally care about these people.”

Switch­ing between for­mats has also kept her own en­thu­si­asm levels high.

Those be­hind the scenes on de­scribe her as effervesce­nt and pas­sion­ate.

“Ev­ery­thing is new for me with this show so I’m ex­cited, re­ally ex­cited. Ev­ery time I come to these shows, I’m not jaded, I feel like I’m see­ing it all for the fi rst time.”

Ask her how she feels about her fel­low judges and she gushes, but not with sac­cha­rine plat­i­tudes.

Scherzinge­r has a fi nely honed BS de­tec­tor after a cou­ple of decades work­ing in the mu­sic and TV in­dus­tries and is also keenly aware bad chemistry among judges will turn view­ers off.

“I get along pretty well with most hu­mans. In this sit­u­a­tion, you have to make it work and have a great chemistry; people feel that at home,” she says.

“But I don’t have to make any­thing work on this panel, I truly adore them. With Manu, I didn’t know how funny he was, how much of a team player he is; Shane is mak­ing us laugh con­stantly and Lucy is a Dis­ney princess brought to life, she’s sweet as pie and that shows in her spirit.”

Rat­ings will ul­ti­mately de­ter­mine whether the lat­est in­car­na­tion of has legs and will keep Scherzinge­r com­ing back to Aus­tralia.

The fu­ture also de­pends on her day job, with the singer post­ing re­cently that she is back in the stu­dio and work­ing on new mu­sic.

“I am very grate­ful for the show. My heart and soul is mu­sic and ev­ery chance I get in my sched­ule, I am doing a writ­ing ses­sion or get­ting into a stu­dio.”

“I have so much mu­sic. But times have changed so much with stream­ing, it was about al­bums and it’s now all about sin­gles, so I guess I have to evolve and let go of some of this mu­sic.

“It’s not about want­ing to be out there com­pet­ing or try­ing to be cool or rel­e­vant.

“It’s got to touch people at the right time.”

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