May 11, 2012 8:00am PT by Lesley Goldberg
'Glee' First Listen: 'The Glee Project's' Alex Newell Covers Nicki Minaj's 'Starship' (Exclusive)
Glee takes on Nicki Minaj on Tuesday during the second of back-to-back episodes when New Directions squares off with rival Vocal Adrenaline at Nationals.
During the episode, which features New Directions heading to Chicago for the competition, The Glee Project's Alex Newell will lead Vocal Adrenaline in a cover of Minaj's "Starships" and The Hollywood Reporter has the exclusive first listen to the track.
Newell, who along with Lindsay Pearce, was a runner-up during Oxygen's The Glee Project and plays Wade Adams/Unique on the Fox musical dramedy. His character first appeared during Glee's April 17 "Saturday Night Glee-ver" episode in which he seeks out Mercedes and Kurt's advice about how to handle his over-zealous coach, Jesse St. James (Jonathan Groff).
Wade ultimately ends up performing KC and the Sunshine Band's "Boogie Shoes" in drag, as his alter-ego Unique, both embracing Newell's love of drag and staying true to Glee co-creators Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk's vision of who he'd play on the flagship series.
Listen to the track above and hit the comments with your thoughts on who you think will come out on top between New Directions and Vocal Adrenaline.
Glee airs back-to-back episodes starting Tuesday at 8 p.m. on Fox with "Props," its body switch hour, followed by "Nationals" at 9 p.m. Listen to the rest of the music from the episode at gleethemusic.com.