The two met for the first time while backstage at a Beyoncé concert, though Jennifer couldn’t recall which one. “I don’t know which concert you’re talking about, because I go to all of them!”
They both started singing at church
Like Jennifer, Todrick developed his singing voice at church services. “I started singing at church, as you do — my mom made me sing every single week,” Todrick said. He started dancing at 8 years old, and when he saw the ballet “The Nutcracker,” he was hooked.
They both love the ‘Sister Act’ movies
“Changed my life,” Todrick said of “Sister Act” and “Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit,” which are Jennifer’s favorite movies, too. (She even evoked Whoopi Goldberg’s character Sister Mary Clarence for Halloween!)
“I used to sit around by myself and pretend that I was with somebody else at the piano,” he said, referencing a scene from the movie.
He also paraphrased a quote from the film: “‘If you wake up every single day and the first thing you think of is singing, then you’re supposed to be a singer.’ And that’s the thing that has kept me going… Even as a child, it spoke to me.”
Both JHud and Todrick set sail as cruise ship performers before hitting it big! JHud sang in a “Hercules” musical on a Disney cruise ship, while Todrickperformed on the Royal Caribbean and Holland America lines.
Both Jennifer and Todrick enjoyed their time on the cruise ships. “It helped prepare me for the industry,” said JHud, while Todrick added, “It helped you work with people of all different walks of life,” and “helped you fine-tune your craft. If you can sing and dance on a moving ship, you can do it anywhere.”
They both own Sphynx cats
Jennifer owns a Sphynx cat, and Todrick has three! “That’s love, everybody,” he said of the unique feline pet.
Jennifer asked Todrick if it’s okay to put a sweater on her kitty since she’s always cold due to being hairless, and Todrick responded in the most Todrickway possible: “Mine have a whole wardrobe. Costume changes, everything.”
They both made their Broadway debut in ‘The Color Purple’ musical
These two multi-hyphenates made their debut on Broadway in the same musical, though at different times. Jennifer portrayed Shug Avery in “The Color Purple” Broadway revival, while Todrick was an understudy for the character of Harpo and danced in the original production starring Fantasia Barrino.
“That opportunity changed my life,” he said. “Where I grew up in Texas, I didn’t have a lot of representation of myself and a lot of people who looked like me.”
He continued, “I remember sitting in that audience and thinking how proud I was to be African American because everybody was just so talented… the way they moved, how majestic they looked. It was a life-changing moment.”
They’re both ‘American Idol’ alum
Surprisingly, Todrick and Jennifer didn’t even mention that they both competed on “American Idol”! Jennifer made it to the Top 7 during Season 3 of the singing competition, while Todrick made the Top 16 during Season 9. He is remembered in particular for coming up with an original tune for his audition song in front of the judges!