Q&A: Kendra Wilkinson
From reality TV star to stage actor, Kendra Wilkinson takes on a starring role in the Strip’s newest show, Sex Tips for Straight Women from a Gay Man, at Paris for a limited engagement. The scripted show is Wilkinson’s first foray into acting, and she’s loving every minute. With the recent release of season six of her WE TV reality show Kendra On Top, Wilkinson is full steam ahead in her career, and she recently sat down with Las Vegas Magazine’s Kiko Miyasato to talk about it all.
You’ve gotten a few weeks of shows under your belt. How does it feel?
I’m loving every single second of it. I never settle for comfort, never settle for less, for just being comfortable onstage. I wanted to test myself and see how much I can do, how much I can push myself, how I can merge the character (of Robyn) with Kendra. Opening week and weekend, I played it very safe with my character—word-for-word perfect. I could go home and pat myself on the back and say I gave 100 percent. But now I’m in the process of discovering how I can merge my character with Kendra to give the audience what they want. What I’m discovering is when I become Kendra throughout my character, that’s where we get the big laughs. I love to discover new ways to play my character and test it out, it’s so much fun.
Do you want to do more stage work in the future?
Of course, yes! I’m loving this so much. I’m a perfectionist. My husband calls me the T.O. (Terrell Owens) of the entertainment world. I push myself to be the best that I can be. It might sound crazy to other people, but I’m always voicing my opinion on how to make things better and how to push ourselves to make it better. I want this big, I want this successful—and every night onstage I strive for that—that feeling.
How’s it been with the cast?
We’re a family. We work well together, we laugh together. If we mess up, we laugh and don’t take ourselves too serious. The other night I messed up—I forgot my first line. I’ve never done that. And we just laughed at it. We all pull each other up, and try to pull one another up throughout the show.
What are Vegas audiences like?
We’ve had all different types of audiences. … The energy that the audiences give us we give right back, we’re working together. I’ve asked audiences after the show what they thought, before they saw the show and after. And a lot of people had said, “Oh, I thought it was a show with sex acts onstage or something or it was a Q&A-type show.” They didn’t know it was an actual play with a storyline. The show came from New York where it’s been running for about four years now. When the audiences discover it’s a play with a storyline they end up falling in love with it.
You seem like you have your part down, that you’re enjoying the character so far.
Everything that I’ve done in my career has prepared me for this. Half the battle is just being comfortable with yourself. I’ve done Girls Next Door, Dancing With the Stars—13 years in this entertainment world and it’s all prepared me for this. It’s the perfect show, perfect play for me to be in, perfect start in the acting world. It’s a perfect fit for me.
You also have Kendra On Top season six that’s started. Can you give us a sneak peek?
Well, you’re going to see the Vegas show process. But the main story is about me and my mom. Me and my mom are coming off Marriage Boot Camp: Reality Stars Family Edition right now and we are in a place where we don’t have therapists and we don’t have people to secure us ...it’s about me and her now without any enabling. It’s where we go from here—how is our relationship going to get better? Or is it going to get worse? There’s a lot of drama this season, a lot of heartache, a lot of ultimatums, trust issues and the audience will be there to discover it all along with me. You’ll see the journey that I’m on with my mom and my dad. You want to stay tuned because we just shot the finale at the opening night of my Vegas show. Let’s just say there was chaos, drama, wow! You want to follow it because you’ll get the answers you’ve always wanted. If you watch this season—ever since day one of the Girls Next Door to now everything ties in, it’s a journey, it’s my life, it all makes sense, it’s the cherry on top of everything that I’ve ever done.
Between TV, stage, the industry, are there ever days you want to run away and hide?
Not at all, if anything I want to run towards it. Perfect it, make it better. I believe that this is what I’m here for, it’s my calling. I believe in the spiritual world we’re all given roles and it’s your spirit that has to do its job, and my job is to do what I’m doing and to teach and inspire. My journey is 100 percent real and authentic and I’ve been given this job to inspire through my story and being here in the acting world now is a plus, it’s a gift.