As co-anchor of the Today Show and co-host of Today With Hoda & Jenna, Hoda Kotb has interviewed her share of high-profile people. From political figures to rock stars, the journalist has questioned famous faces from all walks of life.
Yet there is one mega celeb that Kotb has never been able to snag for a sit down. The Today star just found out she’s going to get her chance.
Kotb and co-host Jenna Bush Hager for Today’s fourth hour recently announced an exciting change to their show. Twice a week, the two will host their hour in front of a live, in-studio audience under the moniker of Today With Hoda & Jenna & Friends.
“The ladies having an audience will make them better at what they do,” Executive Producer of Today’s fourth hour Joanne LaMarca told Variety. “There’s a certain energy when you perform on stage, when you have people react to what you are doing. I think that the audience is really going to change things up and I can’t wait for Hoda and Jenna to get to meet the best friends they don’t know they have.”
Kotb sees the opportunity of connecting with viewers on a deeper level by having them experience the show in person. “We want to make it light and make it fun, but there’s a lot of heart and soul on the table every day, and a lot of vulnerability,” she explained.
The tapings with a studio audience begin on February 6. Information on how to obtain tickets is on Today.com.
Earlier this week, Kotb was given a monumental surprise. Showcasing a ‘dream board’ of their goals on air, Kotb and Hager noted an image of media mogul Oprah Winfrey since Kotb has always wanted to interview the Queen of Talk but never had the opportunity.
The journalist soon found out she’s going to get her chance. Kotb was given a ‘surprise box’ with a remote control and told to press play. Up came a video of Winfrey and Hager, who were in both recently in Florida.
“Hoda, it is going to happen this year,” Winfrey said, speaking to Kotb in a previous video, according to People.
Throwing back to Kotb and Hager live in the studio, Hager announced that ‘it’ is happening on Friday, February 7, with Winfrey coming to see them in the New York City studio.
Kotb’s reaction was one of pure surprise. “What?!” she exclaimed as crew members handed her an Oprah t-shirt to wear. “Wait, this Friday?”
“She is going to be in our studio for our second show,” Hager explained. “We have Oprah as one of our very first guests.
Wellness tour stop
Hager went on to tell Kotb that Winfrey is stopping by their studio for her 2020 vision tour, which focuses on wellness, to give those who couldn’t get tickets the opportunity to see the media icon in person.
“We are filling the audience with people who want to share in this journey that may not be able to see her on tour,” Hager said. “They are coming to see her here.”
Kotb was purely flabbergasted. “I need a minute,” she shared. “The fact that we are going to have a studio audience Thursday is enough to blow our minds … “
“And then the second day is Oprah!” Hager reminded her. “Oprah!”
Kotb vowed to wear the Oprah t-shirt all day in honor of their impending guest. “Because you know why, it’s going to remind us that when you really do wish and hope and pray for something, it happens,” she said.
Tune in on February 7 to see Oprah with Hoda and Jenna!
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