Andrew Lloyd Webber is the real reason Nicole Scherzinger skips X Factor this weekend

The judge was away in Austria for a gig with the theatre boss… you know, the one who called her “crazy” for passing on Cats for the X Factor?

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In May of this year a “furious” Lord Andrew Lloyd Webber dubbed Nicole Scherzinger “crazy” for abandoning a part in Cats on Broadway to be a judge on X Factor. Now, in a neat bit of irony, Scherzinger won’t be seen in parts of this weekend’s X Factor as she ditched it in favour of a gig with the very same Lord Andrew Lloyd Webber.

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No doubt with Lloyd Webber’s barbed words ringing in her ears – “Nicole will not get her Tony Award” – Scherzinger was confirmed as a judge on the ITV panel alongside Sharon Osbourne, Louis Walsh and Simon Cowell in June, but kept a prior commitment with the musical legend for later that same month.

So while the rest of the judging panel took up their seats for what was then the first day of London auditions, Scherzinger flew out to Austria to meet Lloyd Webber where she performed Buenos Aires from Evita. Former X Factor judge – and Cowell’s fellow America’s Got Talent judge – Mel B, stepped in for the day.

Much to everyone’s surprise, Scherzinger was full of praise for Lloyd Webber after the event: “Had so much fun being back on stage with Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber in Austria,” she wrote on Instagram.

Had so much fun being back on stage with Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber in Austria on Fri night. #living #buenosaires #thebigreunion

A post shared by Nicole Scherzinger (@nicolescherzy) on


Indeed, despite the catty comments surrounding her decision not to continue in the role of Grizabella (which she’d played in the 2014 West End revival), Scherzinger says everything’s peachy with the two of them now.

“He only wants the best for me, and Andrew and I are all good,” the former Pussycat Doll told us at this year’s X Factor series launch.

Of his less than subtle comments about her – which included saying she wasn’t that well known in America anyway – Scherzinger insisted:

“I love him and Maddy [his wife Madeleine Gurdon], they’re family to me, and I can’t wait for us to create together and work together and create history, because he’s a legend.

“That just means that he’s passionate about me and he believes in me,” she added.

“I chose to do The X Factor for the obvious reasons – obviously I love my job, I love what I do and I’m damn good at it,” she explained of her choice to return to the reality singing contest. “But it allows me to do other things. 

“I just finished Dirty Dancing, I have another movie coming out this year with Disney, and I’m able to work on my music […] time and timing is everything.”

Here’s hoping things have remained fine and dandy with ALW after wind-up merchant Cowell – very much the cat that got the cream – encouraged Scherzinger to sing Memory from Cats with a very bemused contestant during the first weekend of auditions shown. 

“That one’s for you Andrew,” Cowell teased. 

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See The X Factor on Saturday and Sunday at 8:00pm on ITV