Long before they were Bravo Housewives, Erika Girardi and Danielle Staub had something else in common.
As pointed out by the Instagram account Best of Bravo, the two stars both used to perform at a go-go club called Shakers in Carlstadt, New Jersey.
Girardi, 48, invited the Bravo cameras and her costars to the club on Wednesday’s season premiere of the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills. During a cast trip to New York City, Girardi took some of the ladies with her on a visit to the Garden State establishment where she worked at as a young woman trying to break into show business.
During the episode, Girardi — who will make her Broadway debut as Roxie Hart Chicago the Musical this season — reflected on her rise to fame under challenging circumstances.
“Maybe if I grew up with wealthy parents, I wouldn’t have been working at a place like Shakers,” she said. “But you play the hand you’re dealt.”
In an interview with Bravo’s Daily Dish, she said she was glad to share her past with her fellow Housewives.
“Well, it’s 30 years later, so it’s many lifetimes,” she said. “I think it’s interesting when you find out things about people. I’d written about this in my book. But taking them there, and actually smelling and seeing and feeling the place is a whole ‘nother experience and, you know? I’m happy to have done it and I’m happy it’s over and you know, it’s a story. You know? It’s one of those stories that you can tell about your life.”
Staub, meanwhile, wrote about her stint as an exotic dancer in her 2010 memoir, The Naked Truth: The Real Story Behind the Real Housewife of New Jersey — In Her Own Words.
In the book, Staub, 57, name-drops Shakers and another club called Satin Dolls in Lodi, New Jersey (which was the inspiration for Bada Bing in The Sopranos). In one chapter, she recalls the moment she “hung up [her] stilettos for the last time.”
“I stopped by my old employers, Shakers and Satin Dolls, but I didn’t take the stage,” she wrote. “I’d already had my last dance. I could feel it in my heart that my dancing career was over. Ending it was actually easier than I thought. I imagined I would miss the spotlight, but that wasn’t the case.”
The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills airs Wednesdays (8 p.m. ET) on Bravo.
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