Grande will play Penny Pingleton, Tracy Turnblad’s (newcomer Maddie Baillio) best friend, in the live televised musical production.
“Most of you know that I’m really just a musical theater geek…. like a really big one… so…. my heart is very full re: this announcement,” Grande wrote to her nearly 40 million followers in a series of tweets.
“I AM NOWWW A CHECKERBOARD CHICK #HairsprayLive #Penny,” she tweeted, a screenshot of which she Instagrammed with the caption, “I’ve never been more excited for anything in my entire life.”
"Penny has been a dream role since Hairspray opened on Broadway. At 9, I was (and still am) in LOVE w @KerryButlerNyc. hope to make u proud," she gushed.
Grande was notably enthusiastic about her upcoming role, unable to fathom that she would be sharing the stage with Broadway greats Harvey Fierstein and Kristin Chenoweth. “IS THIS AN ACTUAL JOKE,” she tweeted.
“I’m so honored and beyond excited to be a part of this dream cast…… I will for sure pass out at the table read,” Grande adorably admitted.
Grande is the latest A-list star to join an already impressive ensemble cast that includes Baillio, Fierstein, Chenoweth, Jennifer Hudson, Martin Short and Derek Hough.
Hairspray Live! will air Wednesday, Dec. 7 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on NBC.