Days after news broke about a major shake-up at America's Got Talent, Julianne Hough returned to NBC for their annual Christmas at Rockefeller Center special. Hough, alongside Jordan Fisher, performed "All I Want For Christmas Is Love" during the holiday event. Given the ongoing drama regarding AGT, her performance certainly came at an interesting time.
During the performance, Hough proved once again that she's a total star, as she sang and danced her heart out on stage with fellow talented multi-hyphenate Fisher.
Of course, the timing of the performance, and Christmas at Rockefeller Center, is worth noting, as it comes in the midst of drama concerning Hough, fellow ousted judge Gabrielle Union, and AGT, which airs on NBC.
Don't mind if we duet. #RockCenterXMASDecember 5, 2019
The whole matter began when Variety reported on Nov. 23 that Hough and Union were being let go from the competition program after only one season. Shortly thereafter, Variety reported that Union had brought up numerous concerns about AGT's allegedly toxic work environment during her time with the show, which led many to believe that her complaints had something to do with her being let go.
The publication reported that Union was subjected to criticism over her wardrobe and hairstyle choices. She allegedly was told that her rotating hairstyles were "too black" for the AGT audience, a note that sources claimed she received half a dozen times. A separate network insider refuted the claim about the breadth of notes, saying that Union only received notes about hair continuity. Union was also involved in a matter concerning Jay Leno, who allegedly said a racist joke while filming a bit for AGT (the line was not included in the episode that aired Aug. 6).
Following these reports, it was announced that Union would be sitting down with NBC in order to discuss the culture and work environment on AGT.
“Gabrielle believes there is a toxicity that has become normalized at Talent,” an insider told Deadline on Dec. 2. “She wants to help fix that, because she loved a lot of her time on the show last season, even with the issues with Simon and what have you."
On Dec. 4, Union related on Twitter that the meeting had taken place and that she felt it was "productive."0comments
As for Hough, she released a statement to Variety about her time on AGT. "I had a wonderful time on America's Got Talent, I loved working with the cast, crew and producers. I am happy to continue my working relationship with NBC," she told the publication, adding that she was excited about her upcoming projects with the network, Holidays with the Houghs and Christmas at Rockefeller Center.
"I'm looking forward to what the future holds," she added.