Ariana Grande Won't Make a New Album Until Wicked Is Finished: 'Spending All of My Time with Glinda'
Ariana Grande fans are going to have to wait a bit more time for the superstar's next album.
In a video posted to the 28-year-old "34+35" singer's cosmetics brand R.E.M. Beauty's YouTube channel on Thursday, Grande did a makeup tutorial and answered questions from fans — including one about the follow-up album to 2020's Positions, which she hasn't started working on yet.
"This is a question I'm nervous to answer, but I feel like I want to have a little bit of transparency and honesty with my fans," said Grande in response to a fan inquiry about her next record. "The truth is, I have not begun an album."
"I hear through the grapevine that you have a lot of theories and expectations in that department," the pop star continued. "But after Positions, [I] was not ready to start another album yet, so I have not begun another album."
Grande then explained that shortly after the release of Positions, she learned about the opportunity to audition for the upcoming film adaptation of Wicked, in which she'll be playing Glinda. "I went into full preparation mode, while I was also shooting The Voice," she said, referring to her stint as a judge on the NBC singing competition series last year.
"So I was like shooting and then also doing lessons every day, 'cause I just wanted to be prepared for when the call came," explained the "7 Rings" performer. "I had no idea when it was coming, but I was just like, I want to be ready to go in."
Despite having a longtime love for the musical and knowing its plot and music, Grande said she wanted to focus all her attention on preparing. "I know that I know the material like the back of my hand, but I still have so much to learn, and I want to be [in] prime condition."
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"I went pretty hard getting ready, and now… Thank goodness, literally the most incredible gift of my entire life is, you know, this role that I've adored since I'm 10 years old," she told fans. "And that is going to have every piece of me, every minute, every ounce of my heart, my time, my soul, my everything that I can give it, so my hands are quite full with a lot of other thrillifying work at the moment, and [R.E.M. Beauty] being a part of it."
"I'm spending all of my time with Glinda," Grande explained of the reason she's not currently working on new music. "I just was not ready."
Wicked, which also stars Cynthia Erivo as Elphaba, is certainly going to be a big undertaking for Grande, as director Jon M. Chu announced last month that the Broadway musical will be adapted into two films rather than one.
"Here's what happened," Chu wrote in a letter shared on social media. "As we prepared this production over the last year, it became increasingly clear that it would be impossible to wrestle the story of Wicked into a single film without doing some real damage to it. As we tried to cut songs or trim characters, those decisions began to feel like fatal compromises to the source material that has entertained us all for so many years."
"So we decided to give ourselves a bigger canvas and make not just one Wicked movie but TWO!!!!" the 42-year-old director continued. "With more space, we can tell the story of Wicked as it was meant to be told while bringing even more depth and surprise to the journeys of these beloved characters."