Lance Bass is ready for his 'next chapter'
Lance Bass is ready for his "next chapter."
The former *NSYNC member is currently starring on Fox's "My Kitchen Rules" alongside his mother, Diane, and the intense experience has reminded him that getting into the culinary world has "always" been something he's wanted to do.
Though he admits that he'll "never be a chef," the "Finding Prince Charming" host has loved cooking since his days of growing up in Mississippi, so he's ready to dive right back into it.
I recently caught up with Lance Bass over the phone to talk about how "My Kitchen Rules" brought out a new side of his mother, what he learned from the first season of "Finding Prince Charming" and why he's finally going to see Hamilton this year.
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Check out my full conversation with Lance Bass below:
What can people that have never seen "My Kitchen Rules" expect from the show?
A lot of great food, that's for sure! I hope you eat before you watch the show, because it'll make you very hungry. It's hilarious, because I had no idea what to expect going into it. Me and my mother are a team, and we throw these elegant dinner parties -- which I've really never done before. I'm from Mississippi, where we do buffet style when we get together. So, I learned a lot!
But then the other side of it is that it's a Fox reality show, and there is so much drama on this show. It's ridiculous.
What kind of drama?
You get it all! Of course, when you're in the kitchen, things heat up -- especially when there's a clock counting down. But there are a lot of strong personalities cast on this show, and you see them come out. The claws definitely come out ... especially between [Brandy and Brandi Glanville].
You're really thrown into a high-pressure environment on this show. Did it bring anything out of you or your mother that you weren't anticipating?
I wasn't too surprised by me -- I'm used to high-pressure environments, and I actually work better when I'm under pressure. I was really surprised, though, to see my mom really get in there under all of this pressure and kill it. She is the star of this show! When we cook in the South, there is no pressure or time limit -- it'll be ready when it's ready! -- but with something like this, people are yelling at the dinner table for their food! It adds a lot of pressure.
Is the cooking/culinary world something that you're interested in getting more into?
It is, actually! Culinary has always been the next chapter that I've wanted to do. It's something that I love, and I'm passionate about. I'm such a foodie. I'll never be a chef, but I love being a home cook. I love the whole process of cooking, the entertaining aspect, the bonding you do with your friends in the kitchen; that's what I love about it. I definitely plan on making this my next chapter, and I would love to do that with my mother. We make such a good team, and I didn't even realize how great we would be together in that way.
Let's talk a little bit about "Finding Prince Charming." Looking back on the first season, how do you think it went?
I loved it. I watch a lot of television -- it's been my life for the last 15 to 20 years -- and it's something I love creating, producing and being in. I love everything about it. I've always wanted to be a part of a show that is shot this way, because I'd never been a part of a reality competition show, especially one like "The Bachelor," which is one of my favorite shows. I also watched the Lifetime show, "UnREAL," so I wanted to know how "real" that was.
As a producer, I'm very interested in how things are shot, so it was a fascinating learning experience for me. I got to watch how it was all made, and it really is genius how they write this show as it goes with these non-actors. It's a genius thing.
It was touted as a groundbreaking show -- "The Gay Bachelor" -- but what do you take from the divisive reactions to the show from people online?
I didn't expect the fanbase to be so crazy the first season. I thought it would take a few seasons to get everyone into it. You know, it's hard to find Logo, and we're a newer network, but the way that the people reacted -- good and bad -- was amazing. Either way, people watched and talked about it, and it was trending every single week. I didn't expect that at all.
I also love hearing the reactions from fans as a producer, because it tips us off on things they want to see, which is great. It's a silly competition show, and it's a very familiar format that people can get into, but anytime we can have great stories on television about gay people and are able to tell their story, that provides the real meaning for me. That's what I see underlining all the drama: You get these great, true stories about these guys, some of whom have never dated in their lives because of their upbringing. All of these stories start coming out that people watching can relate to, and that's what makes me so happy. As a little gay kid from Mississippi, I would've loved to have seen a show like this and recognize part of myself in a guy in the house. It would've made me feel less lonely and a lot better about myself.
Going into 2017, you're partnering with StubHub. Tell me about that.
It was just a natural partnership. I've used StubHub for a very long time. I obviously love concerts -- I've put my life around them -- and as an entertainer, I understand what it's like to have experiences over something physical. That's why I love this partnership, because people ask me all the time for gift ideas and things, but it's just the easiest thing to recommend amazing live performances -- from Broadway to concerts -- those are the things you'll always remember.
This year I'm definitely looking forward to seeing Ariana Grande myself -- I think that will be one of the best concerts of the year. I'm also interested to see The Weeknd and how he is on tour. We see him on TV all the time, but I'd love to see what he puts together as a tour. Then, of course, I'm the only person in the world who hasn't seen Hamilton yet, so I'm excited for them to get to L.A. so I can actually see it!
Do you remember what your first concert was?
There were a few, and I can't exactly figure out which one was first. But, I think the very first one was Tammy Wynette. It was her and Tanya Tucker in Branson, Missouri. [Laughs]
What else do you have planned for 2017?
Well, we just found our next Prince Charming, which is exciting! And I also have a show that I'm producing with Kris Jenner and Robin Anton, where we're finding the next great American boy bands and girl bands. It's been a passion project of mine for almost 10 years now, and we're finally getting it done. It's one of those competition shows where you get to live with the contestants in a house, and I'm in charge of the boys and Robin's in charge of the girls. By the end of the show, you'll have one great American boy band and one great American girl band that will go head to head and see which one America wants.
This interview has been edited and condensed.
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