Wednesday night on The Masked Singer, viewers were not too shocked to see JoJo Siwa unmasked as T Rex. Despite performing in a full-body dinosaur costume for three weeks, her fans, and even some of the show’s judges, guessed her identity before she was sent home.
But viewers didn’t get to see the behind-the-scenes moments that led Siwa to feel inspired in her growing career. She explained the show gave her a new level of confidence in her voice and an eagerness to continuing developing her career.
“It actually helped me a lot with my singing,” she told Newsweek. “There was an incredible singing coach on the show named Tamera [Beatty] who I still talk to. She really helped me be comfortable with my voice.”
Siwa is a 16-year-old dancer, singer and YouTuber with an absolutely bustling career. Her music, life and career, in general, seem to follow a theme: loud colors, extravagant displays and lots of sparkles. Her top song, “Boomerang”, has over 21 million plays on Spotify, and though her fans are mostly children—famously including North West—most adults seem to know her name too, either by association with her fans or through pieces of online criticism.
Despite her fame, which began after she appeared on Dance Moms, Siwa revealed she’s still working to love her singing voice. “I do struggle with confidence in my singing. And that’s okay,” she noted. “You know, it’s okay to not be 100 percent confident in something. I’m trying to find that confidence, and [Beatty’s] really, really helped me find it, which is incredible.”
The star is known for having an exuberant amount of energy and dousing herself in glitter nearly every time she gets on stage. It was that energy, and Siwa’s well-known voice, that led Twitter conversations to name her within the first few notes of her first masked performance.
Siwa understood why. “I do have a really recognizable voice and I have quite recognizable energy on stage,” she said. “I didn’t expect them to get it that first week. I expected the second or third week.”
As for the judges, Siwa was thrilled they knew her name in order to list her as a guess. “I thought the judges would guess it a lot quicker because they actually watch the clues. They can see the whole thing. To think that Jenny [McCarthy] really knows who I am to be able to guess that was me—Nicole [Scherzinger], Robin [Thicke] and Ken [Jeong]—it’s so cool.”
Being an online personality, the musician also revealed her fans knew something was up, even before The Masked Singer began. While filming the show, Siwa wasn’t posting on social media for two weeks. “They picked up on it right away,” she said of fans asking where she’d gone.
Though the show’s process was difficult for Siwa, who shares much of her life online—she was only able to tell her parents, brother and one friend about her involvement before her dismissal on Wednesday night—she explained how the experience impacted her positively.
“I can have vivid memories of being on The Masked Singer which is really cool,” she said. “I can literally remember being on set and being with all of those people. It’s really cool that I have something like that to hold on to for the rest of my life.”
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