At least some of the endless speculation is over: The Shot executive producer and judge C.J. Allen has FINALLY revealed one of two new judges for the show’s fifth season in September. In this case though, it’s not such much “new” judge as it is returning judge.

Returning to the independently produced talent competition alongside already announced judges Juneyt Yetkiner, Danya Dixon and C.J. is one its all-time most popular judges: vocal coach, singer and songwriter Joni NehRita. NehRita sat on the panel for seasons 1-3 and acted as resident mentor in season 4 following a performance residency at the Shangri-la Muscat resort in Oman.

“Joni is a superstar,” said C.J. in an announcement about Joni’s return, “She brings a wealth of expertise, insight, experience and talent to the panel that is hard to match. I wanted Joni back on the panel for season 4 but timing didn’t work out; when she said she was available for season 5 in September, it was a no-brainer. I didn’t think twice in asking her to come back to judge.”

There is still one more judge announcement to come before the end of the summer.

The Shot is currently accepting video audition applications and registration is also open for in-person, open auditions set for September 9. Singers age 16 and over can apply online at