When it comes to 'Nashville Wives,' Brentwood's Erika the best
Have you heard the news? The Real Wives of Brentwood is about to come to a TV near you. OK, so it’s not really The Real Wives of Brentwood, it’s Private Lives of Nashville Wives, but it does have a Brentwood wife and, lucky me, I have her on speed dial.
Well, let me qualify that.
I do know her and have her contact info but it turns out that when you are a “Nashville Wife” you can’t just pick up your phone or use your private email to talk to reporters anymore. So via the TNT publicity team, I caught up with Erika Page White as soon as I possibly could after learning Wednesday morning that she had been cast in TNT’s new reality show.
If you attended one of the Town Center Saturdays, you likely know Erika too. She was one of the street festival’s main volunteers. In January 2012, she and I commiserated about the demise of her former soap, ABC's One Life to Live together in a BrentWord column.
But back to the show. This is news. Big news. First there was Nashville, ABC’s primetime soap, and now we have Nashville Wives. What’s more, not only Erika but her family and Brentwood itself will have a starring role.
Now, don’t start looking for cameras and sound trucks all over town. Erika tells me that with only a few exceptions, the entire season has already been shot. The Perch, Stacey Rhodes Boutique and Sopapillas at Gateway Village will take center stage.
Produced by the same outfit that’s brought us those wives from New Jersey and Atlanta and Hollywood, my first question, of course, was, “So how does a nice girl like you get hooked up with something like this?” OK, so maybe I didn’t put it quite like that, but you get the picture.
Turns out Erika’s had the same LA agent since her pre-Brentwood wife-and-mom days. Apparently her name had been tossed out and someone got in touch with her agent who got in touch with her. The rest, as they say, is history.
Since she’s never watched a lot of reality TV, Erika said she wasn’t sure what to expect. She described reality TV “as a whole different world.”
“I can’t wait for you to see some of this stuff,” she said.
Since the show revolves around each of the wives’ personal lives as well as their interactions with each other, Erika’s husband of 13 years, singer Bryan White, and two sons Justin, 10, and Jackson, 8, are featured as well. But it’s the husband-wife dynamics that take center stage.
When I asked how that went, she said, “Honestly, I think this has made us even stronger. In a weird way it made us talk more about life and our dreams and that we have to stay strong.”
“You’re going to see some really great stories within each couple,” she added.
Her favorite part of the experience was all of the exploring around Nashville she got to do. “I love to explore, but I tend to explore Williamson County; I do stuff with the kids.”
Every time they filmed in Brentwood, “I kept thinking, ‘Oh my god, I’m going to run into somebody I know,’” but she never did. And though “everything you see is as it happened,” she did share that she couldn’t just show up unannounced with the camera crew wherever she wanted. They always had to have permission and releases.
“The city is going to look beautiful,” she said.
“What city?” I asked. “Nashville or Brentwood?”
“Both!” She answered diplomatically.
So besides asking how she was selected, my next biggest question was why would she want to put herself and her family out there on a show like this.
She answered with a question: “I’m at a point where I’m asking myself, ‘What do I want to do with my life?’”
After a decade as a stay-home mom (a role she treasures, fyi), she said she’s ready to step back into the working world, whether that means acting or modeling or something else.
I asked her if she watched Nashville, and she said “as much as I can.”
Would she like to get a role on it?
Maybe she and Williamson County mom Kimberly Williams Paisley could carpool to the set.
In the meantime, Erika tells me she’s open to another Nashville Wives season if it finds an audience and is picked up for renewal. I told her the crew has my permission to come film at BHP World Headquarters anytime.
Want a sneak peek into the Private Lives of Nashville Housewives? Click here to see the trailer. I, for one, can’t wait until Feb. 24.