What Happened At ‘The Kelly Clarkson Show?’ Host Responds To Toxic Claims
If you love daytime talk shows and scoured the Internet today, you might be wondering: what happened to The Kelly Clarkson Show?
On Friday, May 12, 2023, Rolling Stone published an exposé about an alleged toxic workplace environment fostered behind the scenes. The report comes days after Variety reported that The Kelly Clarkson Show would be moving production locations from Los Angeles to New York City. What are the details behind what happened at The Kelly Clarkson Show? Read more below to find out.
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What happened at The Kelly Clarkson Show?
What happened at The Kelly Clarkson Show? 10 former employees and one current employee talked to the music and culture magazine claiming that multiple executive producers and production managers did not treat them professionally or respectfully when they were working at the show.
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In their allegations, the employees emphasized that Kelly Clarkson herself wasn’t aware of the toxic work life that was going on and that their issues with the show has nothing to do with her personally. “Kelly is fantastic. She is a person who never treats anyone with anything but dignity and is incredibly appreciative,” one employee said. “I would be shocked if she knew. I’d be floored if she knew the staff wasn’t getting paid for two weeks of Christmas hiatus. The Kelly that I interacted with and that everyone knows would probably be pretty aghast to learn that.”
The employees also alleged that they were “overworked, underpaid” and “working on the show deteriorated my mental health.” One employee claimed that “NBC is protecting the show because it’s their new money maker, but Kelly has no clue how unhappy her staff is.” Other former employees offered details about Emmy Award-winning executive producer, Alex Duda, who one described as “a monster.” The former employee claimed, “I have a friend who’s an executive producer who warned me about taking this job because apparently, she has done this on every show she’s worked on.”
Rolling Stone reported that former employees were also frustrated that there hadn’t been a shift in the culture at the show despite a number of HR complaints. They’re also worried that the more the season goes on, the worse the working culture will be. “You would think that they would be very proactive and actually care, but they just nod their heads and take notes and it goes nowhere,” an employee argued.
One former employee claimed that they described their negative experiences with certain producers to HR after their exit interview, but rather than disciplinary action, those producers ended up getting promotions instead. Another employee alleged that an unnamed production manager had irrational behavior once they were approached. “He would speak in a way that you’re not supposed to in a professional environment—cursing, raising his voice, and throwing a huge temper tantrum,” the former employee claimed. “Other people who know him would laugh it off and say, ‘Oh, he’s in a bad mood,’ but it shouldn’t be laughed off. Why does he get a pass for bad behavior?”
The supposed turmoil of the job caused some people to be emotional during their workday. “I remember going up on the roof of the stage to cry, being like, ‘Oh, my gosh, what am I doing? Why am I putting myself through this?’” an employee recalled. Another said, “It deterred me from wanting to work in daytime ever again. When I say I was traumatized, I was really traumatized.”
One former staffer also alleged that they were intimidated by producers who went out of their way to make staffers feel scared to ask questions and get work done. Because of this environment, the conditions prompted them to take a month away from their job and see a psychiatrist for the first time in their life because they “truly couldn’t handle it mentally.” Another employee also told the outlet that working at The Kelly Clarkson Show was “by far the worst experience I’ve ever had in my entire life.”
NBCUniversal, who runs the show, issued a statement to Us Weekly about the allegations against the show and its producers. “We are committed to a safe and respectful work environment and take workplace complaints very seriously and to insinuate otherwise is untrue. When issues are reported they are promptly reviewed, investigated and acted upon as appropriate. The Kelly Clarkson Show strives to build a safe, respectful and equitable workplace that nurtures a culture of inclusivity and creativity.”
On May 13, 2023, Kelly Clarkson posted on Instagram a statement about the issue. “In my 20 years in the entertainment industry, I’ve always led with my heart and what I believed to be right,” she began her statement. “I love my team at The Kelly Clarkson Show, and to find out that anyone is feeling unheard and or disrespected on this show is unacceptable.”
She continued, “I have always been, and will continue to be, committed to creating and maintaining a safe and healthy environment at The Kelly Clarkson Show. As we prepare for a move to the East Coast, I am more committed than ever to ensuring that not only our team that is moving, but also our new team in NY, is comprised of the best and kindest in the business. Part of that build will include leadership training for all of the senior staff, including myself. There is always room to grow and ensure we are all being/becoming the best versions of ourselves in any business, especially when it comes to leadership. To ensure that any notion of toxicity is eradicated,”
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