Rita Ora Reveals the Challenges of Hosting America's Next Top Model (as a Brit!) and Dishes on 'Tough' Judge Ashley Graham
Rita Ora tells PEOPLE that working with the new panel was like "going to work with your friends every day"
“I get that I’m from London and I’m not American, but I’m a lifelong fan of the show,” Ora, 26, tells PEOPLE in this week’s issue of hosting the hit modeling competition series’ upcoming revival.
Plus, the pop star got OG host Tyra Banks‘ blessing.
“I knew of her inside out from being a fan, so when I got to meet her, it was incredible,” says Ora. “She has such a huge personality and she’s exactly the same in real life.”
Ora says Banks, former ANTM host and creator (who will continue executive-producing), has been “really supportive.”
“She’s really happy with where it’s going,” adds Ora of the upcoming 23rd cycle, which in addition to the singer, features a brand new panel of judges including supermodel Ashley Graham, stylist Law Roach and Paper magazine creative director Drew Elliott.
• For more on Rita Ora and the new cycle of ANTM, pick up this week’s issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday
According to Ora, Graham, 28, brings her game face to the judging panel.
“Ashley Graham is tough,” says Ora. “I’m the soft one! We each have our roles. I wanted to create a panel that worked like a factory.”
RELATED VIDEO: Supermodel Ashley Graham Gets Candid About Body Image
Plus, it doesn’t hurt that the group gets along great: “It was like going to work with your friends every day! It makes it really lovely and easy.”
As for what they’re looking for? Forget supermodel — they want a superstar to win this year.
“First and foremost, we want a girl that can carry on working after the show,” says Ora. “Basically, we want a triple-B girl: Brand, Boss and Business.”
“All of the girls on the show are beautiful — there are lots of beautiful girls in this world! You can take a great picture, but nowadays, that’s just not enough,” she continues. “I want the winner to come out into this industry and be prepared to stand out from the crowd and really become her own brand.”
And when it comes to being a triple-threat type of girl, Ora has it down pat: She models, designs and is working on her second studio album.
“I would love for my new album to be out at the same time as the show,” says Ora. “It’ll be a great example of the multidimensionality I preach to the girls. And also, it’s about bloody time!”
The new season of ANTM premieres Monday at 10 p.m. ET on VH1.