Jennifer Hudson is ready to take on NYC in 'The Color Purple'

By Tionah Lee

Start spreading the news! Jennifer Hudson is coming to New York in more ways than one. The singer is joining Eva Mendes as the newest member to the New York & Company family. Jennifer is the face of the Soho Jeans collection, which features a variety of styles (including her favorite — high-waisted) and cuts geared toward comfort. The 33-year-old spoke to HELLO! about the exciting collaboration with the brand, her fantastic summer vacation and her new plans that include calling New York City her home as she gets ready to star in The Color Purple on Broadway.

Photo: Getty Images for New York & Co.

Hello!: How did this collaboration come about?
Jennifer Hudson: First off, I think it’s the perfect timing for it since I’m coming to New York to do Broadway, and it’s going to help me find my New York Swag. Originally, I’m not a jeans girl, and I tried them, and I was like 'No really I love this.' For me, comfort is everything. When I stepped into these jeans, I was like 'this is for me.'

It reminds me of my younger self, being able to be a regular woman and regular girl and feeling comfortable in it. So I feel like it’s a mixture of so many things, no woman is left out. You can be conservative; you can have your little rip thing going on, you can dress it up, you can dress it down!

H!: Are you in jeans in the summer too? What else are you loving now?
JH: I get cold easily too, so jeans come in handy for me. Normally on the plane, I would wear just a legging. When I first tried these jeans on, I figured I must really like them because I wore them to the airport. They fit the curves, look good, and I actually wore them in Jamaica when I was there.

Photo: Courtesy of New York & Co.

H!: How was your trip? Any fun activities?
JH: We went bike riding and a lot of outdoor stuff. I love the outdoors, and I love the heat, so we did a lot of that stuff.

H!: You travel a lot, what kind of snacks do you eat when you’re on the go?
JH: It can be whatever you want it to be as long as it’s portioned out. I don’t care for eating plain foods. I don’t like to be confined and forced to have whatever is just there. I like to have options, and most importantly you have to eat what you want because if you don’t that’s how you over eat.

H! So pizza when you come to NYC?
JH: I love pizza; they have some in the back for me right now. I love sushi; I love white fish, that’s a good little something. When I’m hungry and in a hurry, I like to grab a banana and some almonds. That’s a good snack that’s really quick and no points for me.

Photo: Getty Images for New York & Co.

H!: You mentioned you'll be living in the Big Apple to do The Color Purple on Broadway. Are you excited, nervous?
JH: I haven’t been stationary for the last 15 years so this will be the first break ever where I get to sit in one spot, which is New York, doing what I love. As far as the performance aspect of it, being on stage every night doing live shows, finding the stamina to be able to do it. There’s a different language to being on stage. You have to project so the whole room can get the same experience whether you’re in the front of the room or the back of the house. I’m sure they’re going to prepare us for it; it’s probably like going into boot camp. I’m looking forward to it; I’m ready for it.

H!: Oprah is a producer of the play, how was it working with her?
JH: Well that was amazing, but with that comes a little pressure. She’s there in good support, and I think the other biggest challenge is that it's an American classic, The Color Purple, so it comes with a great expectation. I want to uphold that, and Broadway, I want to be able to do it justice.

WATCH THE BEHIND-THE-SCENES VIDEO FROM HER CAMPAIGN SHOOT

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