She stepped out of her black Porsche Panamera whipping her hair. Tall and blonde, she’d be hard to miss even if she wasn’t tottering on stilettos, wearing a stylish floral wrap dress. Heads turn as Christall Kay walked into our office – and she’s thoroughly enjoyed all the attention. “I love being a celebrity,” she tells DRUM. “Every day is a chance to dress up and share my story.”
The lawyer-turned-businesswoman is thrilled to be back in the limelight in the second season of The Real Housewives of Johannesburg (RHOJ) on 1 Magic (DStv channel 103) every Friday. If last season was anything to go by, viewers are in for more designer clothes, cappuccinos and catfights.
Christall became one of the most talked about characters in the hit show that follows the over-the-top lives of six wealthy socialites. Her claims that she owned a private jet and shared a room with Charlize Theron when they started out as models in their teens resulted in some serious showdowns.
There was name-calling, silent treatment, and at one point things got so heated she and her co-stars nearly brawled in a mall. “I’m not in touch with any of them,” Christall unashamedly says. “Every piece of drama that came about was justified. People can see my heart is in the right place. I don’t go out of my way to be nasty. I’m just trying to make my mark in the world and some of the ladies were making life difficult for me,” she says.
Her relationship with co-star Brinnette Seopela, who also returns to the show, remains strained. “The only reason I speak to her is because she’s in the new season and I just have to grin and bear it. Not to sound spicy or anything but it was very evident from the first time we met that we are not each other’s cup of tea. Brinnette and I have different personalities. I like spice and adventure and she is boring.
“She was the first girl to tell everyone she didn’t like me, and it went both ways. I don’t feel like I can trust her. I ’m very spiritual and as much as I can be crazy and fun, I feel intensely and she’s the opposite of that. “I knew they would ask me to come back because without me and my drama, there is no show.”
Much has happened since last season, Christall tells us. She lost her dog, her father fell ill, and she has split from her financial adviser husband, Eddie Greeff. “My husband never liked the idea of having our lives out there in the public domain and that was one of the reasons our marriage failed.
“Eddie never understood my passion was in the arts. He would have been happy if I worked as a lawyer and lived a private life, but that’s not who I am.” Christall got into business after leaving law 10 years ago, but she had always wanted to be a star. Separating from Eddie wasn’t an easy decision. “The fights were becoming more intense, but mostly there was just no romance and I had to be honest [with] him and myself. I couldn’t live a lie anymore,” she says.
“We had everything we needed – the money, the house, a beautiful son – but the marriage lacked romance because we were genuinely just friends and nothing more.
The couple were married for seven years and started out as neighbours in Morningside, Johannesburg. “I was engaged to someone else before Eddie, but the relationship didn’t work out. We lived on the same block and eventually became housemates. I wanted to settle down and have children and I went to the person I thought would be best suited to the job, so I proposed to Eddie.”
She wouldn’t dare chip a perfectly manicured nail by cooking up a storm so that night Christall ordered dinner. “I didn’t quite go on one knee, but we agreed to get married,” she recalls.
Thrilled when he accepted her proposal, she believed she could make it work and on the outside their relationship was picture-perfect. They tied the knot in an extravagant wedding ceremony at Joburg’s exclusive Summer Place before heading to Rio de Janeiro for their honeymoon. “I was trying to create this majestic thing that didn’t really exist,” Christall says.
“But in all honesty, we loved each other as friends, and brother and sister, nothing more.”
After hearing about the split, her new castmates (see box) gave Christall a surprise party to help her move on. “I can’t tell you much about it yet, but it was very thoughtful of them.”
After hearing about the split, her new castmates gave Christall a surprise party to help her move on. “I can’t tell you much about it yet, but it was very thoughtful of them.” Filming the second season of the reality show was tough, she reveals. On the first day of shooting, Christall lost her Dalmatian. Wonder, named after her song she claims was a Billboard hit, died of poisoning after drinking water from her pond. A few months ago her father suffered a stroke and she needed to help him move to an old-age home in the Karoo. “A lot was happening in the first week of RHOJ and I just hope that I don’t seem dramatic because I’d been going through a lot,” she says.
The show is not scripted. “What you see is what you get. However, there are moments where I’ve adjusted my personality for great television. But I’ve always been true to myself. As long as people learn from my experiences, I am happy and will always stay true to who I am.
Christall is working on new music and plans to release her follow-up single, Run Through the Fire, along with a complete album which she says will feature reggae artist Buffalo Souljah and rapper Gigi Lamayne.
Christall is chasing her dreams and hasn’t given up on finding love. “I would love to date, but not right now,” she says. “When I do date, I want a pure, refined gentleman who will give me all his attention and be very into my career interests. “He must understand I was born for the limelight.”