Adventures in Rome, drama between friends and a dream Broadway debut!

“The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills” returns for its 10th season in 2020 and Erika Jayne is teasing upcoming highs and lows, from “hard knocks,” to fulfilling her Broadway ambitions with a starring role in “Chicago”.

“Everyone expected us to have a smooth season and we have anything but that,” Jayne teases while talking to ET Canada on her way to “Chicago” rehearsals. “It’s emotional, it’s beautiful, we go to Rome and have a lot of fun. Then there’s some hard knocks along the way. Our show definitely has conflict.”

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“Women are very interesting creatures in terms of behaviour and surviving,” she adds, about what surprising twists viewers can expect.

“Sometimes you think you know someone and you don’t. I’ll leave it right there!” Jayne, 48, says the ladies will complete filming when they’re reunited in New York City to watch her in “Chicago” at the Ambassador Theatre, where she makes her debut on Jan. 6.

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“RHOBH” returns following fan favorite Lisa Vanderpump’s shock exit last season and with two new cast members, actress Garcelle Beauvais and fashionista businesswoman Sutton Stracke. Reflecting on her five-season “RHOBH” journey, Jayne says despite the drama often associated with the series, her involvement been more rewarding than challenging — especially with the doors it has helped open with ventures like a shoe line for ShoeDazzle, make-up partnerships and now Broadway.

“The greatest part is all these opportunities that ‘Housewives’ brings,” she says. “Then the hard stuff is when you care about people and get into disagreements with them. That hurts. There are moments you get embarrassed or put your foot in your mouth. Those things are hard to watch, but overall, there have been more pluses than minuses.”

One of the biggest pluses is the pinch-me moment that will kick off 2020 for the singer and actress — making her Broadway debut as Roxie Hart in “Chicago”. While she has worked on television shows including “The Young and the Restless” and enjoyed singing and dancing throughout her dance pop career, it’s portraying Roxie which marks the ultimate tick on Jayne’s professional bucket list.

“I grew up performing and it’s on every performer’s list to do Broadway, so this an incredible opportunity in an incredible musical,” she says. “Roxie Hart is tons of fun. I think everybody identifies with Roxie. She’s fun, raw, sassy. It’s fun to play with those devilish parts of yourself. I think [what I relate to most is] her survival skills, her hope and never letting go of her dream, even though it was attained in a very strange way. She’s an optimist.”

Erika Jayne
Erika Jayne

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“And, I’ve gotten a chance to really delve into the psychology of ‘Chicago’,” Jayne adds. “It was based around real women and murder was a form of entertainment at that time, so it’s really incredible. Everybody on ‘Chicago’ has been so warm and open. It’s like a little slice of heaven and it’s a nice change of pace for me.”

Jayne admits stepping into a “well-oiled machine like ‘Chicago’” has been nerve-wracking. “Being the new person, you want to fit right in, make sure you know your stuff and not be slow. Not only are you learning songs, but choreography, the stage, the lines — there’s a lot of moving parts, so it’s complicated.”

“But you’ve just got to roll with it and embrace it — feel all those nerves and feelings of confidence one minute, then thinking, ‘Help me!’ the next.”

When it comes to the daunting moments, Jayne has “RHOBH” co-star Lisa Rinna, who previously portrayed Roxie, to turn to. Some of those conversations will feature in upcoming episodes.

“Lisa was Roxie and [her husband] Harry [Hamlin] played Billy Flynn, so I’ve spoken to Lisa many times about her experience and what she learned. I was really fortunate to have Lisa and I still text her. With the first number, ‘Funny Honey’, on the ladder, I texted, ‘Why didn’t you tell me about this damn ladder, Lisa?’ She’s like, ‘I blocked it out!’ You’re up 13 feet high delivering your first solo on a ladder… it’s breathtaking.”

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Jayne’s husband of 20 years, attorney Thomas Girardi, has also been a huge support as she prepares for opening night. “I wouldn’t be here without Tom,” she says. “He’s been more than supportive and I’m very fortunate to have a partner who totally understands. And hey, he gets to come watch me on Broadway — that’s pretty cool!”

Jayne is also looking forward to having the “RHOBH” clan in the audience. However, she’s also relishing time away from reality cameras, given how on-screen tension often overshadows the stars’ off-screen projects and accomplishments.

“A lot of focus is on the drama and conflict,” she says. “So, it’s nice to be away from that and just indulge my creative senses and focus on becoming the best I can be in this role.”

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