The “Glee” alum was a contestant on season 17 of “Dancing With the Stars” in 2013 where she was partnered with six-time Mirrorball champion Derek Hough. The actress is now the first celebrity to win both competitions.
On “The Masked Singer,” Riley was dressed as the Harp. She started off the season as the first contestant to perform, and she was also the last contestant to take the stage, as she ended up winning the competition.
In an interview with Billboard after the show, Riley shared that she felt free to really be herself under the mask.
“I think I’m always myself, but it was a way for people to just listen to my voice and have no preconceived notions of who I am or my gifts,” she shared. “That was cool to me. I’ve been in the industry for a pretty long time and I’m sure people think they know who I am, but knowing that they got to hear me with new ears and see me with new eyes when I was revealed was exciting.”
Riley Performed Big Numbers Throughout the Competition
Throughout her time on “The Masked Singer,” Riley chose to perform big numbers by big singers. Her song choices included “Perfect” by Pink, “I Have Nothing” by Whitney Houston, “Thank You For Being a Friend,” “About Damn Time” by Lizzo, “The Edge of Glory” by Lady Gaga, and “Gravity” by John Mayer.
When she was revealed, Riley shared that her time on “The Masked Singer” was “amazing.”
“This has been such an amazing experience,” Riley shared. “Just to be able to come out here and be completely covered and let my talent speak for itself. And the love that I have for people, and wanting people to heal, and feel what it is that I’m singing. So I hope everybody felt my soul, because I bared it right here on this stage.”
Who Were the Celebrities on “The Masked Singer” This Season?
The 22 contestants on “The Masked Singer” for season 8 of the show had combined 32 Grammy nominations, 16 Emmy wins, eight Gold albums, four Golden Globe nominations, have published 42 books, have won 10 Teen Choice Awards, and have earned five Hollywood Walk of Fame stars, host Nick Cannon revealed in the beginning of the season.
The first contestants revealed on “The Masked Singer” season 8 were William Shatner and Eric Idle as the Knight and the Hedgehog.
Later, Hummingbird was revealed as Chris Kirkpatrick, Pi-Rat was Jeff Dunham, Panther was Montell Jordan, and Fortune Teller was Daymond John. Also revealed were the Mummies as the “Brady Bunch” brother, Maize as Mario Cantone, the Mermaid as Gloria Gaynor, and the Beetle as Jerry Springer.
Following those revealed, Robo Girl was revealed as Kat Graham, the Walrus was revealed as Joey Lawrence, the Milkshake was Le’Veon Bell, the Venus Flytrap was George Forman, the Bride was Chris Jericho, and the Avocado was Adam Carolla.
Rounding out the season 8 contestants were Linda Blair as Scarecrow, Ray Parker Jr. as Sir Bugaboo, Nikki Glaser as Snowstorm, Wilson Phillips as the Lamb, and finally, Riley as the Harp.
The only panelist who guessed correctly when it came to Riley’s identity was Nicole Scherzinger. The other panelists thought her identity might be Jordin Sparks or Jennifer Hudson.
“The Masked Singer” has been renewed for season 9, according to TVSeriesFinale, though no release date has yet been announced.
“Dancing With the Stars” is set for a season 32 return in the fall of 2023 on Disney+.