April 24th, 2012
03:52 PM ET
Singer and now actress Katharine McPhee is enjoying life as an "American Idol" alum. Since finishing season 5 as the runner-up, McPhee has sold more than 400,000 albums, and she's launched an acting career.
On NBC's freshman series "Smash," she plays wannabe Broadway star Karen Cartwright, who has the technical training to make it on stage but learns that the off-stage drama might stand in her way.
She recently sat down with "Showbiz Tonight's" Kareen Wynter to talk about life on set, her work with the non-profit group Malaria No More, and if she'd be good at judging an "Idol"-esque competition.
Katharine McPhee: I'd be too mean
McPhee tells CNN she keeps up with what's going on with the latest talent shows on TV. Listen to why she thinks she might not make the best judge.
McPhee: You can make a difference
McPhee and her husband work with the non-profit group Malaria No More, which works to make sure that every family in Africa has ready access to the tools they need to prevent, diagnose and treat malaria. Here she explains how one person can approach helping to solve such a huge problem.
'Smash' made me a morning person
Katharine McPhee tells Showbiz Tonight's Kareen Wynter that loving what she does and the people she works with makes it much easier to make it to the set of "Smash" early in the morning.
Watch Showbiz Tonight Weekdays Exclusively at 11PM ET on HLN.
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