Singer Ariana Grande added a new item to her growing list of career accomplishments this weekend: hosting Saturday Night Live.
— Perez Hilton (@PerezHilton) March 13, 2016
The “Dangerous Woman” singer was able to show off her acting chops and singing skills by pulling double-duty on Saturday Night Live both as the celebrity guest host and the music act.
Even though Ariana Grande crossed into a new chapter with her career during the live broadcast of the popular NBC sketch comedy show, she apparently rode the coattails of another singer that did the same thing himself.
— VH1 (@VH1) March 13, 2016
During the “Tidal” sketch, Ariana played Chloe, an intern that works at the streaming music service owned and founded by hip-hop mogul Jay-Z. Within the sketch, Tidal experienced a series of technical difficulties that prevented multiple channels from streaming properly. The crew working behind the scenes rushed to try and find a way to bridge the gaps of dead air within each affected channel, which is where the unsuspecting intern Chloe came into the picture.
Chloe (played by Ariana Grande) was asked to take the microphone and perform several songs airing on the affected channels, buying the crew enough time to restore operations and get those channels back up and running again.
As seen in the clip, this allowed Ariana Grande to show off her versatile singing chops and overall range while performing such songs as:
- Britney Spears – “Baby One More Time”
- Shakira – “Whenever, Wherever”
- Rihanna – “Work”
- Celine Dion – “It’s All Coming Back to Me Now”
- Whitney Houston – “I Will Always Love You”
Ariana Grande may have impressed quite a few people with her performances throughout the “Tidal” sketch — especially those that did not know that she was so skilled at impersonating other singers.
However, the core concept of the “Tidal” sketch featuring Ariana struck a chord with Saturday Night Live fans and critics in a different way primarily because it was not very original at all.
Over three years ago, during an October, 2012, episode of Saturday Night Live, Bruno Mars took the stage as a first-time celebrity guest host and musical act combo as well. One of his most memorable sketches, Bruno Mars starred as an intern working at Pandora Radio, another popular streaming music service.
Like the Ariana Grande “Tidal” sketch, the “Pandora” sketch with Bruno Mars was based on a series of technical difficulties that prevented multiple channels from streaming properly. Bruno Mars’ character was asked to step in at the last minute and perform a number of hits from other popular acts to bridge the gap while the Pandora crew worked hard to restore operations.
The similarities between the Ariana Grande and Bruno Mars sketches were apparently not overlooked on Twitter. A number of people targeted and mocked the “Tidal” sketch for its lack of originality.
— Shannon (@SN_Dub) March 13, 2016
The SNL Ariana Grande Tidal skit was pretty good except that Bruno Mars did the same exact skit two and a half years ago when he hosted.
— Hillary Lynch (@hillarylynch) March 13, 2016
they did a version of this ariana grande/Tidal sketch before with Bruno Mars/Pandora and it changed my perception of BMars
— Nam Le (@AGuyNamedNam) March 13, 2016
— John deHaas (@TheJohnBdeHaas) March 13, 2016
Ariana Grande starring in a close copy of an old Bruno Mars sketch was not the only part of her SNL experience this weekend that made headlines. The former Nickelodeon star also went viral with footage of her using an expletive during one of her musical performances on live television.
[Image Credit: Jason Merritt/Getty Images]