Don’t talk to Luann de Lesseps about having a backbone — she has one. And, according to her, that’s exactly why she’s taking the high road with her castmate Ramona Singer after a series of jabs in Turks & Caicos. That’s a road she’s travelling alone, though, because her Girls Trip castmates weren’t impressed, quickly calling out Singer for being a faux friend. But to the drama, Lesseps says “c’est la vie.” She has other things she’s focused on such as her Christmas cabaret and performing sold out shows.
She’ll deal with Ramona when she gets back to New York where the RHONY cast will have to pick up the pieces of a tough season — a season so uneventful, it didn’t even get a reunion. Criticism came from all sides as the series attempted to add politics and diversity to a conversation that typically consists of fighting and intoxication. So, where does RHONY go from here? Lesseps gives us her take, opens up about what happened on Girls Trip and more.
This interview has been edited and condensed for brevity.
How do you feel about Ramona now knowing that so many of the ladies called out her behaviour towards you?
LDL: At a certain point, I’m kind of used to her behaviour in a way, so it doesn’t phase me. And I sing about those things in my music. [sings] Chic, c’est la vie! C’est bon! C’est bon! The little things can take you down, so it’s best to brush them off. Chic, c’est la vie! C’est bon! C’est bon!
You know, that’s kind of how I deal with it. And Teresa’s like, ‘You don’t have a backbone.’ I’m like, ‘No, I think it takes backbone in order not to respond to Ramona,’ and that’s my way of dealing with her. But they weren’t having it.
How did you make sense of Ramona both sex shaming you and then saying she was jealous of how sexually confident you were?
LDL: I just found her [to be] not in a great place. She seemed unhappy. She seemed like she was drinking a lot to get over that edginess that she was feeling — being kind of a fish out of water. I hate to say it. And it just wasn’t working for her. In the end, I just felt bad for her.
Who surprised you the most on the girls trip?
LDL: I was surprised by Kenya because I had trepidations about her. I thought she threw a lot of shade and she’s not liked by all the women, et cetera. But I really identified with her because she’s a character and an interesting woman — well-travelled. We got along a lot better than I thought we would, and I had no problem with her — she was great.
And then Kyle, I thought was really interesting. She’s got her issues with her body and so I was surprised by that. I was surprised by how funny she is. She’s a very funny girl, a lot of fun to be around, and very human. I didn’t expect that — I expected Paris Hilton’s aunt, you know? She has got her own issues, like we all do, and I felt very human with her and felt very comfortable with her.
You opened up about how tough it is to put your life out there on RHONY. What keeps you doing the show, and are you ever tempted to quit?
LDL: Sure, sometimes. I always say ‘I make that call when I make that call.’ I think my life is day-by-day and I make those kind of choices as I go along. I’m very spontaneous. I always say ‘never again,’ and then, here I am in another season. I’m glad I live that way because it kept my cabaret career going — it’s kind of who I am. I live by the seat of my pants. We make plans and God laughs.
I always say ‘never again,’ and then, here I am in another season.
RHONY had a tough season 13. Why do you think last season didn’t resonate with fans?
LDL: I just think we were going through a lot. We were going through the pandemic, Black Lives Matter and an election. Sometimes it just got too heavy and people want to have a good time. We don’t want to talk about these things sometimes — we just want to escape what we’re going through. I feel like that was the problem, and at the end of the day, we all got along. We all ended on a good note. So that was good. We found ourselves in a good place with each other. I mean, we were wearing titty tassels at the end of the season!
Related: What to watch on Slice this December.
Tell us more about your Christmas cabaret.
I have A Very Countess Christmas, and a new song which I think you saw this season on the show, “What Do I Want for Christmas?” I’m performing it at my live shows now. I loved putting all the women in it because, if not, they would have all bitched at me. It was great to include them and it was great to come out with a Christmas song and have fun and be joyous.
To have an original Christmas song to call my own has been amazing and people are really responding to it and they love it. So I’m performing that at my cabaret shows along with a lot of other Christmas music that I love that I kind of turn on its head and, of course, some classics. I’m thrilled because everything is selling out. I can’t wait to get to Canada. It’s looking like April [I’ll be] in Canada, so I’m excited.
And then there’s your faux rosé inspired by your sobriety journey.
LDL: So, [it’s called] Fosé Rosé — there’s nothing on the market that fills that void. [Now] you have something that looks like rosé, tastes like rosé, but it’s not rosé. It has no alcohol and it’s low-calorie. You feel like you’re part of the party and you’re drinking rosé right along with everybody else. So I couldn’t be prouder. It is so good, darling. You have to taste it.