Inside Nicole Scherzinger’s Very ‘Intimate’ Return to the Stage

Departing from the usual gyrating dance moves and stage theatrics, the Pussy Cat Doll turned solo performer teased new music at West Hollywood’s newest venue, The Sun Rose in low-key performance

Just as there is the novel “location, location, location” in business, Nicole Scherzinger has set the new standard of “intimacy, intimacy, intimacy” in live performance.

As the crowd gathered around the stage at West Hollywood’s take on the late House of Blues, The Sun Rose, last weekend, they waited in anticipation of Scherzinger’s performance. Amongst the crowd sat some of Hollywood’s biggest names in film, TV, and music, all eager to see her, with a cameo from her pastor whom she continually thanked along the way.

After patrons grabbed their drinks and settled in their seats, a full jazz band took the stage and Scherzinger appeared beneath a spotlight, draped in a black dress with a microphone in hand. She immediately strode to the crowd; waltzing around the room and gripping the shoulders of one star-struck attendee while belting out a cover of “I Put a Spell on You.”

“My natural God-given gift is to be on that stage and connect with every person in the room, in every way making people, laugh, cry connecting with my audience on a deeper level,” Scherzinger told Los Angeles magazine. “I feed off of the energy of my audience, and rarely get to play in rooms like that [The Sun Rose], but no matter the size of the room, I want that feeling of intimacy and togetherness.”

As the hours drifted away into the night, Scherzinger continued to sing and channel her theatrical and classical roots. Her performance featured a rendition of Julie London’s “Cry Me A River” that hadn’t been sung so well since London herself took to the studio in 1955.

Scherzinger changes her outfit and continues the performance. (Photo by Huy Do)

Then, a swift outfit change, dimmed purple lights, and more spotlights, before Scherzinger rung out a tribute to the late Prince, a long-time friend, and mentor of hers. As “Purple Rain” filled the room, she queued the crowd to join along.

“I chose this intimate setting to give the audience an opportunity for a one-on-one experience they will never forget,” Scherzinger expressed.

Before the night came to an end, Scherzinger premiered a new song titled “Never Going Back,” with hard-hitting lyrics such as “I’ve been underestimated, undermined, underrated” and “if you ain’t living my story then you ain’t living my glory.”

“I have been writing a lot of anthemic music that I think is very important to get out to world somehow, maybe through an EP, Album, a show, or even in the form of a musical,” Scherzinger detailed. “I also dream of having my own show. I’m a true lover of the old-school variety format. I’ve studied it, and would love to fill that void that the likes of Bette Midler and Cher once held.”

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