A walk around Meredith Vieira’s studio for her new daytime talk show feels more like a walk around her living room.
The set is filled with drawings from her children, mementos from her past and a chair she brought from home.
It comes with the sort of comfort Vieira wants her audience to feel while watching “The Meredith Vieira Show.”
“We have two cats, Felipe and Sweet Pea, that have gone to town on this chair,” Vieira says while pointing to a rip. “I wanted the audience to see this is the way I live because a lot of people live like that and it's OK.”
It highlights the authenticity featured on her new show, which premieres Sept. 8. NBC Connecticut reporter Abbey Niezgoda sat down with Vieira to talk about what else is in store.
“You can expect a lot of humor because I’m a little bit of a goofball,” Vieira said.
The show features a live band and segments like “Stall Talk,” in which she takes daytime television into the bathroom. She promises it's not bathroom humor.
“The premise is that I will go anywhere to get the story or an interview, so we put a celebrity in one stall and I’m in the other and we see what happens.”
No matter the result, Vieira says the focus will be on telling real stories about real people, using the same interview skills she used while hosting the "Today" show.
Her career has spanned almost 40 years and she says the key is being true to her roots.
For Vieira, those roots are in New England, having started as reporter in Rhode Island. Her husband grew up in Connecticut.
“We used to go back all the time,” Vieira said. “West Hartford is beautiful. I’ve lived in New York for a long time, but I’m a New Englander.”
Vieira admitted she still gets nervous as the daytime premiere draws near, but she says i'ts how she knows the timing is right.
“The few times I’ve done a show and not been nervous, it doesn’t work,” she said. “But it feels good. It feels like home.”
"The Meredith Vieira Show" debuts Monday, Sept. 8 and airs weekdays at 2 p.m. on NBC Connecticut.
Photo Credit: The Meredith Vieira Show