Ariana Grande joins cast of 'Hairspray Live!' - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Ariana Grande joins cast of 'Hairspray Live!'

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By: ALAMIN YOHANNES

(NBC) - NBC's "Hairspray Live!" has added music superstar Ariana Grande to its cast. The pop star landed the role of Penny Pingleton in the upcoming live production.

The musical, like the Broadway show, is set in Baltimore in 1962 and was inspired by the 1988 John Waters film "Hairspray." The story follows a young girl named Tracy Turnblad who dreams of dancing on local television program "The Corny Collins Show." Turnblad gets the part and becomes an overnight sensation, but her mother complicates things when she tries to convince her daughter to fight for to diversify among the all-white cast. Grande's character, Penny, is Tracy's best friend.

"We're absolutely thrilled to round out our all-star 'Hairspray Live!' cast with Ariana Grande, one of the biggest recording artists in the world," NBC Entertainment Chairman Robert Greenblatt said. "She's also a Broadway baby at heart, having debuted on Broadway when she was 15, and will be fantastic in the delightful role of Penny Pingleton. We look forward to her millions of fans seeing yet another side to this multifaceted performer and we welcome her to this incredible ensemble of artists."

Grande joins a cast that includes Jennifer Hudson, Kristin Chenoweth, Derek Hough, Harvey Fierstein and newcomer Maddie Bailie.

While the singer is known for her multiple hit songs, she is no stranger to acting. Grande has appeared on Nickelodeon series "Victorious" and spin-off "Sam & Cat" as well as musical "13." Recently, she had a recurring role on Fox drama "Scream Queens."

Craig Zadan and Neil Meron are set to executive produce the musical production, which is set to air Wednesday, December 7, at 8 p.m.

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