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Ariana DeBose to Host First ‘SNL’ of 2022, Roddy Ricch Set as Musical Guest

Ariana Debose Roddy Ricch
Chris Pizzello / Erik Carter

“West Side Story” star Ariana DeBose will make her “Saturday Night Live” hosting debut on Jan. 15, the NBC sketch show’s first installment of the new year.

When Tony Award and Critics Choice Award nominee DeBose, who plays Anita in Steven Spielberg’s adaptation of the classic movie, takes the Studio 8H stage as emcee in a little over a week, she will be joined by Roddy Ricch, who will appear on “Saturday Night Live” for the first time as musical guest.

Multi-platinum artist Ricch will be promoting his sophomore album “Live Life Fast,” which debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart.

SNL” is expected to bring back its studio audience set-up for the Jan. 15 episode, but there is a chance that plans could change before the airdate, an individual with knowledge tells Variety. The final episode of 2021, which was hosted by Paul Rudd, had to cut its audience and a good chunk of its cast members at the last minute out of an “abundance of caution” amid the surge in the omicron variant of COVID-19. The Dec. 18 episode’s planned musical guest Charli XCX did not perform.

All “SNL” audience members are required to show proof of vaccination and wear a mask at all times during taping.

Per NBC, “Saturday Night Live” will air new shows on Jan. 22 and Jan. 29, with hosts and musical guests for those episodes to be announced at a later date.

In addition to its linear airing Saturdays on NBC (which begin at 11:30 p.m. ET/8:30 p.m. PT), the remainder of “Saturday Night Live” Season 47 will be available on Peacock.

“Saturday Night Live” is produced in association with Broadway Video and is executive produced by creator Lorne Michaels. In 2021, the entertainment program was No. 1 in its category last TV season in the key, ages 18-49 demo and won eight Emmy Awards, including outstanding variety sketch series.