'The Real Housewives of New York City' star returns for her 11th season feeling, and sounding, better than ever!
Luann de Lesseps is singing a new tune.
“Finally, I found my passion,” the Real Housewives of New York City star gushes to ET. “You know, it's a true calling for me. When I'm on stage I feel great and I love it and so, it's exciting to have found something you're passionate about and love to do. And the fans are loving it so I couldn't ask for anything more.”
The “Money Can’t Buy You Class” singer is talking about her second act as a cabaret singer. Luann is currently on a fresh leg of her “Countess and Friends” tour, selling out historic venues from coast to coast. ET caught up with the 53-year-old at Feinstein’s/54 Below in New York City, where she first launched her act.
“It’s incredible,” Luann reflects. “It’s a dream come true … the cabaret is full of fun anecdotes, stories. I love to tell jokes and I love to sing, and I love to invite my friends and be the hostess… you feel happy when you leave the show.”
RHONY fans will get to see Luann throw herself full-force into the cabaret on season 11 of the Bravo hit. It’s a welcome return for the star, who sat out the end of season 10, skipping the all-cast reunion to return to a treatment facility for alcohol abuse.
“I'm just over six months sober, almost seven months,” Luann shares. “I continue to make that the most important thing in my life because it is, and I'm feeling really good and I'm doing really well. So I'm happy.”
“I take it day by day,” she continues. “It's not always easy. It's a struggle, but I take it day by day. Sobriety is important to me. It changes everything for me in terms of my happiness and living my best life.”
Since the last season ended, Luann also had to navigate a painful legal issue with her children, who, along with their father, sued the reality star over a trust she allegedly never set up for the kids, Victoria, 24, and Noel, 22. Today, Luann says the lawsuit is, thankfully, behind them. In fact, Luann is working to get Victoria on stage for some “Countess and Friends” shows now that’s she’s introduced their song, “Girl Code,” to the set list.
“It's part of my past, I'm glad to say,” she says. “I mean, I'm still dealing with the fall out of what happened in Palm Beach. But, my kids and I are fine and everything is great between us, which I'm so grateful for, because look, more important than family, there's nothing more important to me. So everything is good with my children.”
“It's not easy,” she adds of having to relive the domino effect of her December 2017 arrest. “But I went through that, and I'm through that now. And so the future is very positive for me in terms of taking care of myself and my family.”
“What you see in the first episode we actually filmed, you know, six months ago,” she notes. “But, I'm in a good place, so it makes it easier.”
“I personally think it's a great season for me, in terms of I'm doing what I like to do and what makes me happy, and that's my cabaret show,” Luann continues. “ You know, some might differ, so I think you'll see a little bit of that going on a little, but you know, I think it's a great season. We have a lot of fun. There's a lot of drama, as always.”
Luann says “a lot of real life stories” come to the surface on the new batch of episodes, including Bethenny Frankel processing the unexpected death of her boyfriend, Dennis Shields.
“I'm there for Bethenny, and she's been there for me in a big way,” Luann admits. “When you have traumatic things like that happen in your life, girlfriends support you and that's, you know, that's what you're gonna see. You're gonna see support… and then you're gonna see whatever is going to unfold, as usual on the Housewives.”
As the trailer tells us, it’s not all rosy for Bethenny and Luann, as Bethenny shames Lu for going all-in on her cabaret.
“We have our disagreements, Bethenny and I, you're gonna see some of those happening on the show,” Luann teases. “[But] Bethenny has been great to me and helpful in terms of helping through this difficult time in my life, and I really appreciate that, of course.”
Overall, Luann sums up her season 11 experience as “transformational.”
“New York is always changing and evolving,” she says. “There's nothing ever stale about New York.”