Nicki Minaj made a late American Idol entrance on Wednesday, leaving contestants waiting and viewers wondering how the rapper missed the start of the live show.
Wednesday’s live episode of American Idol started with one of the judges’ chairs open as Minaj failed to make it in time. Host Ryan Seacrest told viewers that the rapper was late because of “some congestion on the 405. She should be here momentarily.”
Nicki Minaj finally made her Idol entrance 13 minutes late, and the show’s other stars didn’t seem too pleased with her tardiness. After she was escorted to the judges’ table, Minaj had a few private words with a smiling Ryan Seacrest as fellow judge Keith Urban joked about her absence.
Judges Randy Jackson and Mariah Carey didn’t seem as diplomatic, as each of them gave Minaj the cold shoulder during the show.
The contestants seemed equally perplexed as to why Nicki Minaj turned up late to the American Idol show.
“I’m not sure what happened,” Burnell Taylor told Us Weekly. “But I feel like we’re all going to be late at some point in our lives, you know, I’m not gonna judge her.”
Amber Holcomb noted that the absence of Minaj was causing some panic as the show was about to start.
“Everybody was looking for her [before the show]. Everybody was like where’s Nicki, where’s Nicki?! I thought she was going to come in on some kind of platform or in some kind of fog or smoke or something. I thought she was going to have a grand entrance!”
Minaj nearly missed the first singer of the night, Curtis Finch Jr. and his version of season three winner Fantasia’s “I Believe.” But Finch said that as he walked off stage after finishing his song, he saw Minaj watching from backstage.
Nicki Minaj’s late entrance to American Idol wasn’t her only strange behavior of the night. The rapper was noticeably dressed down for the occasion, wearing a hooded sweatshirt and keeping the hood up during her critiques.