New girl on the ‘Single Ladies’ block, chatted it up exclusively with VH1’s Blog. Check out some excerpts below…
How did the first week of filming go?
It went really well. The first week, we had a blast. We did a whole girls’ thing a night or two before we started shooting.
Was that you and LisaRaye and Charity [Shea]?
Yup, LisaRaye hosted an evening at her house. She cooked, I brought the wine, Charity brought these cute little cupcakes, and we just sat around and ate and got to know each other, I think it was super helpful going in, because we went in to a full week of work right after that. Nothing is moving slowly here. I think it really helped and you’ll see that in our first two episodes which we’re shooting right now, you’ll see some genuine friendships. Me and Travis Winfrey have become like, best friends in a week. He’s a super sweet guy. When the press release went out, we discovered we had a mutual friend who connected us via email and I was like, “Travis, your job is to find out where I get my hair done, where I get my nails done,” and he was like “Don’t worry, I got you!” and when we’re on set, we’re don’t make a move without each other.
Were you worried about being the new kid on an established show?
Were you just confident going in, or does it come with experience?
The audition process was a lot and I got to spend a good amount of time meeting my producers, my showrunner, my writer, my director, and everyone was just really nice, and everyone at VH1 was really nice, and we all spoke about our ideas and our wishes of how we’d like to see things go. I’m very much a team player and I just like to have fun, that’s why I do this, so no, I wasn’t worried, everyone had open arms. LisaRaye called me right before each of us went away for the holiday and she was super sweet, she said “Make sure you bring a heavy coat,” and thankfully she told me that because it’s absolutely freezing in Atlanta.
Who knew is correct! Everyone kept saying “You’re moving to Hotlanta,” so I thought it was really warm year-round, and that’s not the case. Thankfully LisaRaye filled me in and told me about some places in the city, so I knew she would be great to work with. Charity and I have a connection, we know someone in common, and Travis and I have a mutual friend as well from New York, so before getting here there was a way that we all outreached each other, had conversations or email exchanges.
Last season ended on a cliffhanger, and there were actually several plot twists that were up in the air, I don’t know if you can tell me anything, but I’m still going to ask, will we get any closure early in the season with any of these stories?
Ummm…yes and no. You’ll definitely find out…let me think how to say this…you’ll find out a little bit of information, but things are about to get quite complicated.
Can you tell me about the character you’ll be playing?
Her name is Raquel Lancaster and she comes from high society Atlanta, her family is pretty typical to that as well. What I think the audience will identify with is that Raquel doesn’t come with the pretentiousness that she could, and there’s this idea of what a woman coming from old money, Tuxedo Park Atlanta should be like and she’s not like that. Her journey is in finding herself again. She hasn’t taken a dime from her parents since college, she’s made a name for herself, but she’s going to ask herself, is this who I really am, and am I making decisions based on what I want, or on what’s expected of me?
How much of her can you relate to?
I think all of us have asked ourselves those questions. I definitely had to decide I wanted to be an actress, and my mom might really be worried about that because she’s just so big on education. I come from a home where if you got a 98, my mom wanted to know “What didn’t you do to get a hundred?” That’s my upbringing. So I knew when I wanted to go into something where I could fall on my ass, basically, and there’s no exact math to the field of acting, I knew that would worry my family. So I went to school for a little while, studying business, and I really had to ask myself if that’s what I really wanted.
Do you think you have a pretty normal life despite having a glamorous job?
Yes, absolutely. I will continue to do everything I can to have that. My secret is keeping the same people who have always been in my life, keeping those relationships intact. I have about ten amazing girlfriends and if I ever got out of line, any one of them would smack me back into place. My team, my professional team is all people I genuinely care about, and I’ve been blessed to build those relationships over the years. My work relationships with my agent and my manager are not about money, yes, that’s their job, but it’s really important that you keep good people around you and you don’t let ego get in the way. But yeah, I live a very normal life, I drive a Prius, I was in Victoria’s Secret shopping for panties yesterday just like any other girl! They were having a sale!
Read full interview HERE.
‘Single Ladies’ airs this summer.