For the last two years, The Countess has been putting the ‘C’ in cabaret star, but on Nov. 30 at The Wellmont Theater, she put the ‘C’ in Christmas.
Luann de Lesseps of “The Real Housewives of New York” took the stage at The Wellmont Theater in Montclair, New Jersey last Saturday for her first Christmas cabaret show of the year to dazzle her glittery crowd.
The first thing that caught my attention upon finding my seat was the set design. From left to right stood frosty white Christmas trees of various sizes filling the stage, along with Santa’s sleigh and a comfortable area rug to tie everything together. The vibe of the set fell into the overlapping categories of de Lesseps’ living room and a festive hallmark store.
The Countess did not keep her audience waiting as she took the stage by storm at promptly 8:15 p.m. in a plunging nude and bedazzled dress and breathtaking diamonds, all of which reflected onto the walls like a disco ball.
Her first number was none other than “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree.”
De Lesseps casually addressed her audience and announced her recent freedom from her two-year probation for charges of disorderly intoxication, resisting arrest and battery to an officer that followed her failed marriage, which ended after eight months.
“Thank you all for wearing those ‘Free Luann’ t-shirts, I think they really helped,” de Lesseps said. “My New Year’s resolution is to hopefully not get married, divorced or arrested.”
She also announced that “The Real Housewives of New Jersey” star, Teresa Giudice, was in attendance. However, before she could bring her onstage at the end of the show, she realized Giudice was not in her seat.
“Oh well, it’s Christmas, she has things to do like go to Italy,” de Lesseps said, jokingly referencing Giudice’s husband’s recent deportation to Italy.
After singing a bongos-filled rendition of “Santa Baby,” de Lesseps introduced the crowd to her game, “Cool or Uncool.”
The unfiltered game took audience opinions of various Bravo celebrities, or Bravolebrities. Captain Lee of “Below Deck” and Jax Taylor of “Vanderpump Rules” were put in the ‘cool’ category, while stars such as Kenya Moore from “The Real Housewives of Atlanta” and Ashley Jacobs from “Southern Charm” met their fate in being named ‘uncool.’
From there, The Countess invited her first guest to the stage, Murray Hill, a self-proclaimed semi-famous comedian from Brooklyn, New York who was mostly unknown to the audience.
Although there was a somewhat uncomfortable amount of cursing, Hill was able to keep the audience fully engaged by putting various couples on the spot and encouraged them to kiss in front of the packed venue (and yes, they were all into it).
De Lesseps reemerged from backstage in a glittering baby blue gown to read her openly honest diary entries from throughout the years.
“Well the cat’s out of the bag. Tom and I are getting divorced,” de Lesseps said, before leading into “Diamonds Are A Girl’s Best Friend.” “He cheated and I’m keeping that diamond.”
The Countess read numerous entries referencing her times from the housewives’ annual trip to the Berkshires or rather, the ‘Berzerk-shires.’
She also included memories of the infamous fish room and last season’s turmoil with the ladies, all followed by remixed lyrics of “Santa Claus is Coming to Town.”
Constantine Maroulis, an American Idol season four contestant and “Rock of Ages” actor, delivered a stunning performance with his soul-touching voice as The Countess’ second guest.
Maroulis performed a rock version of “O Holy Night,” and later came back onstage to get the audience involved in singing the hit classic and karaoke favorite, “Don’t Stop Believing.”
After Maroulis had amazed the crowd, De Lesseps sang her original songs, “Chic C’est La Vie” and “Feeling Jovani,” which preceded her Q&A with the audience.
One fan asked for tips on how to stay classy.
“When you’re classy and elegant, you walk into a room, say hello, look people in the eye and respect them,” de Lesseps said. “Don’t we all know people with money that are horrifying? Not any housewife in particular, but I’m sure you can imagine who I’m talking about.”
In light of her upcoming show, “Marry, F, Kill,” another fan asked her to choose between her costars, Bethenny Frankel, Sonja Morgan and Dorinda Medley, leaving the audience in anticipating cheers.
“I’ll have to marry Dorinda because I want to live at Blue Stone Manor,” de Lesseps said. “I’m going to kill Bethenny because she left the housewives and I’m going to have to do Sonja, of course.”
To finish the show, The Countess sang her fan favorite song, “Money Can’t Buy You Class.”
“Like ‘The Real Housewives of D.C.,’ all shows must come to an end,” she said.
“Christmas with The Countess” had the perfect mix of comedy and song. As a die hard Housewives fan, I was happy to hear all of the references to the show as well as other Bravo programs, all the while getting into the Christmas spirit.
The Countess seemed at home onstage and it truly felt as though I was sitting in her living room casually hanging out with her, her friends and all of her diamonds, of course.