There’s no denying that Joseline Hernandez, the Puerto Rican Princess, is reality tv royalty. Whether it was her pithy one-liners, her on-screen shenanigans or her outrageous take on things, the people have always wanted more of her. And much to her credit, Joseline has managed to transition from reality tv star to executive producer and owner of her own reality tv show.
In its second season, Joseline’s Cabaret is moving to Atlanta this time. And before the show even hit the airwaves, it had already gone viral with a trailer that got the internets talk-ING.
We had a chance to speak with Joseline recently about that viral moment, how the cabaret helps to empower women and why she’s totally different than Mona Scott Young, now that she’s the boss. See what she had to say below.
MadameNoire: I know you saw yesterday that you went viral after the trailer for “Joseline’s Cabaret: Atlanta” came out. A woman was telling her story about abortion and another woman said, ‘double homicide.’ You were there in that moment as it was actually happening what did you make of that?
Joseline: At the time, we had just come in the house. I had just let the ladies come into the house after their long travels. Everybody was kind of tired and I was tired too. I didn’t really hear that part when I was there on set. The one young lady who was telling her story, she was so destroyed and crying that I was just giving her all my attention. I was still kind of shocked by her story. I was still processing everything.
So, I don’t know how I felt. It was so many girls in the background just talking. I had to figure out what happened. But at the moment, I was just like, ‘Whoa.’
I knew that if I allowed the ladies to come into the house, to join Joseline’s Cabaret and to be in this performance with me and trust me, I also have to let be who they are and say what they need to say.
On Sunday, April 18, you gon to be able to see how that conversation ended.
MN: So much of the Cabaret is about you helping these women in their careers by sharing what you’ve already learned. What lessons do you hope to impart to these women?
Joseline: Joseline’s Cabaret is my dream. I’ve always wanted to be in Las Vegas. I always wanted to have my own show and I always wanted to perform with my own music and my own showgirls. I was born to be a showgirl. Back in 2012, I said, ‘I need to do something with my life.’ I came from the struggle, I came from the slums and I really felt like it was my time to figure it out. I came from such a hard place that nobody taught me anything.
Even if you, Miss Veronica, come to Las Vegas and you see my sign, you’re going to say, ‘We’re going to go see Joseline perform!’ You’re not going to see Celine Dion. You’re going to want to see the Princess.
To be able to give the ladies an opportunity to join the Cabaret, knowing that they come from where I used to be at, that for me was easy. It was what I needed to do. And I did it. The girls came together and we had a great performance in Atlanta. It was hard for us to get there but we got there. It was a lot of fighting, talking, tears. I gave away $10,000 for the winner because not only did I want them to come and be great and change their life. But I wanted them to know that I appreciate them. You believe in what I’m doing. I believe in what you want to do.
To get that money, it was a lot that the ladies felt they needed to do and say, a little more than I would have liked. It was a lot of mess and a lot of anger in the house. It was very hectic for me as an executive producer, writer, creator. But I think I handled it well and gave the money away to the best lady.
MN: You have been critical of the way Mona Scott Young has run her operation on “Love and Hip Hop.” What are some things you’re doing differently so that no one feels exploited while they’re doing your show?
Joseline: You know, at the end of the day, whether the ladies are on camera or off camera, I’m going to always be me. I’m going to always bring the best out of them and I’m going to always make sure that I produce them the best that I can produce them.
Where I’m so different from Mona or any other producer is that I keep it real with my ladies. I let them know what it is. I don’t lie to them. They know what it is from the get go. I have a personal relationship with my ladies. I feel like nobody from “Love and Hip Hop” or especially not that lady ever had with her talent.
I kick it with my talent. We go out to eat. I know them, they know me. It ain’t no foo foo, cah cah, no bullcrap.
Then again, Mona’s not an owner. She doesn’t own any shows. I own my own show. So you’re already a little different when you have a little bit more at stake.
MN: How does the Cabaret help women transition out of stripping or sex work if they want to do that?
Joseline: Because it’s giving them an opportunity to showcase their talent without having to do any sexual favors or get naked. At the end of day, the ladies do what they do. Yeah, it makes them money. It’s sexy, they love to dance and entertain. They just don’t know how to go about doing it in a professional way, without having to degrade yourself. And that’s what Joseline’s Cabaret has done for the world.
We had 2000 ladies audition for Joseline’s Cabaret Atlanta. And I only picked 10 girls. So I’m giving them an opportunity and that’s all that I can do. While I live out my dreams, they live out theirs.
For me, I knew that when I used to strip, I wasn’t going to do that my whole life. I got out when I was 23. I got a chance to do it quick, get out at a young age and change my life. That’s all I ever wanted to do. It’s not what you do, it’s where you’re going to go.
MN: What made you say this is not for me anymore?
Joseline: I got lucky enough to start doing my passion, my music. I started doing television and here I am now. For me, it was quick. I knew what I wanted in life and I got it. That’s how everybody should be. Don’t sit around and waste your time if it’s not in your heart. It’s got to be in your heart.
MN: Are you and Ballistic moving forward with a wedding date? What’s going on with y’all?
Joseline: Oh girl. Listen, Miss Veronica. When we do a wedding, I’m going to invite you. The COVID-19 slowed everything down. So we had to put a stop to the wedding. We didn’t want to be sitting up in a wedding with a mask on so we’re kind of just waiting around. Of course we’re still together. I love Ballistic. He’s amazing. The love of my life.
“Joseline’s Cabaret: Atlanta” premieres this Sunday, April 18 on Zeus. You can download the streaming app here (if you have an iPhone) and here if you have an Android. And you can follow Joseline Hernandez on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.