When Bershan Shaw joined the current season of The Real Housewives of New York City halfway through filming, it was immediately clear that she was going to inject the show with some much-needed vivacious energy.
The self-described “multi-preneur” brought instant laughs and shook up the group as a new friend of original cast member Ramona Singer, resulting in an explosive dinner and spar with Sonja Morgan that divided fans online. It was her apology to the group after the fact, though, that really captured the hearts of viewers: Causing a stir, but also taking ownership for her actions? That can be a rarity on Housewives!
Bershan Shaw appears on the latest episode of In The Know’s pop culture interview series, We Should Talk, where she opened up about any anxieties she had before joining RHONY, her friendship with Ramona, how she thinks back to that trip to Salem, what we can expect from her moving forward on the show and how surviving cancer has impacted her life.
“There was a little hesitation because I was like, ‘Oh god, are these girls gonna be mean girls?’ I don’t mind a little shade, I don’t mind a little tell-it-to-your-face, because I tell it to your face all the time. I’m bold, I’m big,” Bershan told In The Know. “You see all these comments, but then you meet the women, and they’re not that bad. They’re not as bad as social media makes them look! I had a little apprehension about that, but when I met them … I loved them.”
Listen to Real Housewives of New York City star Bershan Shaw’s full episode of We Should Talk below, and keep reading for highlights from the interview:
Bershan Shaw on fan reaction to RHONY this season: “I think a lot of things, right? I’ve been looking at the comments because they’re everywhere. Everybody knows. I don’t think it’s boring. Let’s be honest: It was COVID! You couldn’t film in all these great restaurants, partying … New York was shut down. I had never seen it like that. You could look down the street and see no one down the street. You couldn’t party like a rockstar and all that stuff, so give us a break on that. The whole educational [aspect], I think it was needed. Those were [important] conversations, and people don’t like talking about tough conversations. They really don’t. I always say I like how Bravo did it because they didn’t put it all upfront. Every episode gets better. It’s going to get better and better. Wait for it! It’s a lot coming up … Kudos to them. They brought diversity, and it was needed. It’s New York City. You don’t want ‘New York City’ to be all white women. You bring a little color, a little flavor … we’re all different in a beautiful, different way!”
Bershan Shaw on the Salem trip going left and what Leah meant when she said that Ramona “set Bershan up”: “Ramona was like, ‘This is gonna be a girls’ trip. We’re gonna be kiki-ing, we’re gonna be loud, we’re gonna be funny, we’re gonna be drinking.’ When I say you guys are grandmas and boring, I say that to all my friends. It’s a term of endearment. When my friends were watching, they thought it was hilarious. They were like, ‘You’re so real, Bershan. You’re just yourself. You never change.’ I say that to my friends, ‘Girl, stop being boring. Stop being a grandma, get up, get dressed, let’s go!’ … They took it really personally, but it wasn’t personal. It was just terms of endearment. It’s how I talk to my friends! They took it the wrong way. I’m like, ‘Oh, god!’ It spiraled out of control. I think Leah was just talking about [how] Ramona told us it was going to be crazy, and it wasn’t. It was COVID. I was like, ‘Oh, god. I’m gonna get slammed on social media.’ They didn’t kill me. Actually, they embraced it!”
Bershan Shaw on her mentality around joining RHONY: “There was a little hesitation because I was like, ‘Oh god, are these girls gonna be mean girls?’ I don’t mind a little shade, I don’t mind a little tell-it-to-your-face, because I tell it to your face all the time. I’m bold, I’m big. You see all these comments, but then you meet the women and they’re not that bad. They’re not as bad as social media makes them look! I had a little apprehension about that, but when I met them … I loved them. I loved the production. They welcomed me with open arms, even though I was a friend. They never made me feel like an outsider. I was like, ‘Are they gonna try to outcast me?’ Because I’m a boss, you know what I mean? I’m very successful! It was the total opposite. We had bumps in the road, we had some challenges, but I think you get that with any friend.”
Bershan Shaw on her relationship with Sonja Morgan: “Everyone was like, ‘You’re gonna be Sonja’s best friend!’ It’s so funny. I think because we’re both passionate, and we’re both givers, [and] Sonja has a lot of depth to her. She’s deep. I like that. We’re both passionate, so we both clash, you know what I mean? I didn’t think that [we’d clash], but a little bit of drinking, a little bit of liquor, a little bit of pinot noir … it happens. I always say I’m a life coach, but I’m not Mother Teresa. I get it wrong, I yell, I cry, I do all that … Sonja and I, we get into a ruffle, but we’re not hating each other. We talk about stocks on the daily. ‘Buy this, buy that.’ It’s like friendship: You scream, you yell and you make up!”
Watch In The Know’s full interview with Bershan Shaw below, and tune into The Real Housewives of New York on Tuesdays at 9 p.m. EST, only on Bravo.
If you enjoyed this interview, check out In The Know’s recent interview with ‘The Real Housewives of Potomac’ star Candiace Dillard Bassett!
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