*Nick Cannon, recently plagued by multiple health problems that forced him to ease his workload and clean up his diet, says he’s “doing great” so far during the current audition phase of NBC’s “America’s Got Talent,” which premieres May 14 at 8 p.m.
Before he suffered kidney failure in January, blood clots in his lungs in February and the diagnosis of autoimmune disease lupus nephritis in March, Cannon’s workload had him stretched incredibly thin. He’s been hosting “AGT” since 2009, he’s the chairman of TeenNick and also serves as the development and creative consultant for the network, and he had the morning drive slot on New York’s 92.3 NOW FM, as well as his own national radio show “Cannon’s Countdown,” syndicated by CBS Radio.
With wife Mariah Carey and twins Moroccan and Monroe to consider as well, something had to give, his doctors insisted. Cannon decided to give up his morning radio show, but that still leaves a huge amount of work on his plate. Any one of his remaining jobs would be enough to handle by itself.
“At the beginning of the year, obviously there was some concern that I might be overworked or overtired, but my health is 100 percent and this season has been the most fun I’ve had yet because of the environment,” he told reporters at an NBC press day last week. “It doesn’t feel like work. It’s been the best season ever and I look forward to the live shows in the summer.”
The big change this season is veteran shock jock Howard Stern replacing Piers Morgan on the judging panel alongside holdovers Sharon Osbourne and Howie Mandel. For fans wondering how the bold and brash DJ will fit into the PG-flavored show, there has already been one audition incident in which Stern made a 7-year-old boy go into the ugly cry when he buzzed him in the middle of his rap performance.
It’s these moments, Cannon says, that are the hardest part of his hosting job, as he is also tasked with consoling contestants moments after their dreams are shattered. There’s definitely an art to it,” says Cannon, who elaborates along with Sharon, Howie and executive producer Jason Raff, below.