“Blood, Sweat and Heels” Chantelle Fraser Tackles Rape Awareness and Women’s Empowerment In New Stage Play ‘Georgia’
It’s not often that we see a reality TV star venture out and become successful at other things. Outside of NeNe Leaks and occasionally, K. Michelle, the list is rather small. Now, we can add Blood, Sweat and Heel’s Chantelle Fraser to that list of elite few.
Now, don’t get it twisted, Chantelle’s no stranger to success. Prior to landing her roll on the hit Bravo show, she was (and still is, mind you) a power player in the modeling world.
Starting her career as a modeling agent, Chantelle saw an opportunity to give women who were once only deemed good for modeling, a voice and opportunity outside the world of runway and editorial. Her vision to showcase the dynamic talents of these women pushed her to create Flawless NYC at only 27 years old. Since then, her entrepreneurial endeavors have maintained a mission of empowering women and encouraging continuous growth in all facets of life.
Her recent endeavors are no different. Chantelle sat down with NG to discuss her newest ventures including her role in the upcoming stage play Georgia, which touches the topic of rape and relationships, as well as launch of her new beauty and wellness site Flawless-Living.com.
Check out excerpts from the exclusive interview below!
Tell us about your role in the stage play Georgia? Have you always wanted to act?
Not necessarily. I mean, obviously, when you’re younger, there’s always SOMETHING you want to do. But it wasn’t really something, that in the last 10 to 20 years of my life have I ever thought would ever happen to me. I’ve always been pursuing my career as a business owner for Flawless NYC. So, its never something that really entered my mind but I am a huge fan of the arts and I love entertainment.
How’d you snag the role?
I met the director of the play and the playwright and I thought the play’s subject matter was very interesting and thought provoking.. It has a very strong social message and looks at the topic of rape from the perspective of rape in relationships.
The fact that the characters have such polarizing views as to what is defined as rape makes it very controversial and is something that needs to be talked about.
I thought it was a great way to help me to deliver a message and also get my feet wet into acting.
So, how do you think you did? Was it tough?
It’s obviously a very daunting task doing theater because there’s no room for error. There’s no editing process. So, it was definitely a challenge. But one thing about me, I don’t like to be comfortable. I think that when you’re in a position where you’re comfortable, it can be very difficult to grow. So, taking on something that steps outside of my “comfort zone” and puts me in the “fear zone,” in a strange way, was very attractive to me. I thrive on challenges and I am determined to do a great job.
What character do you play?
My character is a Jamaican immigrant with very strong traditional values. She’s also a mom and playing someone’s mom was a bit weird. Lol!
Is there something personal in the play that spoke to you?
I personally haven’t gone through that experience. But I do have friends and people I know who have been through that experience and never reported it. Some even stayed with the man because they did not see it as rape or they thought it was their fault. And Georgia’s message really is, it’s NEVER your fault. And if we can change at least one person’s mind in the audience who might be going through that, it will be worth it.
In tackling such a huge social topic, do you have any views on the recent Bill Cosby scandal?
I don’t really know to be quite honest. I’m not really qualified to say whether he did it or not. I’m not a judge or a jury. I mean obviously it’s a very suspicious that so many woman have come forward and said that he did rape them. But ultimately, he has not been tried in the court of law. So I don’t really think it’s my position to comment on whether he’s a rapist or not. You just don’t know. But if he did it, it’s terrible.
Should we expect to see more acting in your future?
I guess it just depends on how this all goes. I’m always in the space of opportunity. I’m a “yes” person rather than “no” person. So, yes, if other opportunities come to me I would love to take on more acting roles. I’m really enjoying the experience so far.
Are there any other Reality TV stars/ turned actors that admire?
One person that inspires me is Nene Leaks, who never let her age or gender or position as a reality star, which can be quite stigmatized, influence her circumstance and what she wanted to do in life. She always pursued her dream and I think that’s just fantastic.
I think we live in a time now where you can be dynamic, regardless of your age or experience as long as you have the desire, vision and determination to do it.
So what’s next for you?
I’ve recently launched FlawlessLiving.com It’s an online magazine that represents my personal philosophy for success and its designed to empower women to become the very best version of themselves.
I came up with the concept by pretty much going through my own journey. Over the last 10 years, I’ve been on the journey of self-development.
Each week, the site guide our viewers this journey of self-improvement. So, we focus on self-improvements, health and beauty, love, etiquette, style and career. It shows viewers how to continue to be the best. It’s about being the architect of your own life and setting yourself up for optimal success it’s a continuous journey of growth that im going through with the viewers.