NBC yesterday released the first trailer for Season 21 of The Voice – and the reason why this is getting extra headline space is because Ariana Grande has joined the show as a coach this season. There have been other popstars in their prime who’ve been on The Voice before, like Taylor Swift, for example, but Ariana isn’t just a mentor popping in now and again to assist the new artists; she’s in one of the chairs. And, as you can see, she’s swivelling, she’s quipping, she’s encouraging, she’s putting in the work.
Also…she’s saucy. Part of the fun of The Voice is the banter between the coaches, so it would seem, at least from this preview, that Ariana understands the assignment.
For The Voice, it’s a no-brainer why they’d want Ariana. She’s one of the biggest popstars in the game. She brings a lot of attention. And we haven’t really ever seen her in this kind of setting before so whatever they’re paying her, it’s worth every million.
What’s more interesting, though, is why she would do it, like beyond the pay cheque. Of course the opportunity to be a part of the rise of emerging talent would be a factor. But in terms of her own career, because there is no way she and her team didn’t weigh out the pros and the cons of this for her long range plans, what does The Voice do for Ariana?
Ariana has kept a pretty low profile over the last 18 months. And now she’ll be regular weekly viewing, reliably showing up on network television over the course of an entire season, the most accessible she’s ever been through her career. Which means audiences will be developing another level of familiarity with her. She’s 28 years old now, moving from young adult to proper adult. Actors can age into different roles through the stages of their career. Popstars do it through their music, certainly, but there are more avenues now to evolve their image.
That’s what Ariana’s appearances on The Voice can do for her – establish her as an “expert”, no longer one of the young upstarts in the industry but a proper veteran, with experience, with insight. And, pardon the pun, a distinct voice of her own. Really looking forward to seeing how she manages this.
Yours in gossip,