“Gaga is definitely coming,” executive producer and head judge Nigel Lythgoe told reporters after the July 7 results show. “She is coming.”
No, no date is set for Gaga yet, but Lythgoe assures us that we’ll see her before season’s end. “I’m just jumping up and down, because she’s never really judged before,” he says. “This s is going to be interesting. Is she going to be tough?”
Guest judges are notoriously reluctant to be hard on the competitors, something former “SYTYCD” contestant Travis Wall learned during his first stint on the panel during the Top 14.
“What I loved about Travis was that you started out with, ‘It was all good,’ and then you got, ‘What you’ve got to do to straighten this, point that toe,'” Lythgoe observes. “When you come on any of these shows, you don’t want to be booed. Even I get upset at being booed.”
Whether Gaga will be flattering or critical will be up in the air until her episode, but one thing Lythgoe thinks is a given is whether or not she’ll perform. “I don’t think I’ll be able to stop her from doing a number,” he says.
Looking ahead to the July 13 and 14 episodes, “Modern Family” star Jesse Tyler Ferguson will sit in on the judges table, while future “X Factor” judge Nicole Scherzinger is scheduled to perform.
“He’s a huge dance fan,” Lythgoe says of Ferguson. “He went to stage school and all of that, so he knows all about it.”
As for Scherzinger, the head judge is just excited to see dancers working in so many different capacities on television right now. “We’ve got judges judging judges,” he says, laughing, “dancers who are now judges, [and] dancers who are choreographers.”