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posted: 5/19/2014 5:30 AM

Variety is spice of Maya Rudolph's TV special

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  • Maya Rudolph premieres the variety-series inspired special "The Maya Rudolph Show" on NBC Monday.

      Maya Rudolph premieres the variety-series inspired special "The Maya Rudolph Show" on NBC Monday.
    ASSOCIATED PRESS/NBC

  • Sean Hayes, left, Fred Armisen and Andy Samberg join Maya Rudolph for the debut of "The Maya Rudolph Show" at 9 p.m. Monday on NBC.

      Sean Hayes, left, Fred Armisen and Andy Samberg join Maya Rudolph for the debut of "The Maya Rudolph Show" at 9 p.m. Monday on NBC.
    ASSOCIATED PRESS/NBC

 
By Mike Cidoni Lennox, Associated Press

LOS ANGELES -- There's no kitchen sink, but Maya Rudolph has thrown just about everything else into the opening number of her variety series-inspired NBC special, "The Maya Rudolph Show."

"There's comedy and music and special guests and animals," the "Saturday Night Live" alum said in a recent interview. The show premieres at 9 p.m. Monday.

Animals?

"Well, there's only one, I'm not going to lie," Rudolph said with a smile. "There's one pony that just shows up. I just felt like it was important to have."

Also in the opener: guest stars Sean Hayes and fellow "SNL" alums Fred Armisen and Andy Samberg, as well as children and a plate spinner.

But that astronaut on stilts might have ended up on the cutting-room floor, she said.

Rudolph said she was inspired by "The Muppet Show" and "The Carol Burnett Show."

Burnett's show "touched me in the same way that 'Saturday Night Live' did," she said. "It was sort of this environment that was created that felt like this special place, and anything was possible. And people were just naturally giddy and happy when they came on."

Rudolph said she would love to do a weekly series.

"Are you kidding me? If I had the chance to continue to do this, I would be 'very psyched,' as the kids say."

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