Queens unites renowned musical artists Eve, Brandy, Naturi Naughton, and longtime actress Nadine Velazquez. Nadine is considered a newcomer as a musical artist. Slated to premier October 19, 2021, at 10:00 p.m. EST on ABC; Queens is a television drama written by Zahir McGhee(Scandal). — Queens tells the story of four former bandmates, 90’s hip-hop group called the Nasty B**ches, now in their 40’s seeking to rekindle their fame after having been estranged for twenty years. The series stars Eve as Brianna (Professor Sex), Brandy as Naomi (Xplicit Lyrics), Naturi Naughton as Jill (Da Thrill) and Nadine Velazquez as Valeria (Butter Pecan).
“The dumbest thing we ever did was throw away friendships that most people never have. Let’s get this group back together,” Naomi (Brandy) tells the other three members. Stepping back into the spotlight is going to be anything but easy. Mirroring real life, each member of the group is dealing with problems in their personal lives. “Don’t let the fame define you, because when it’s all gone you won’t know who you are,” Jill (Naughton) warns.
Superstars, each in their own right, lead cast members seek to provide an authentic performance tapping into their own experiences and emotions. “We just want to be as authentic as we should be,” Eve said during the show’s TCA panel. “We’ve lived that time and we come from that time so it was something that was important to us. There will be moments from then like when people are listening to the music and they see our outfits, our hair, everything— we want them to be taken back to that time. It’s all about the authenticity.”
“I am musical in my soul, I am a poet in my soul, I am a dancer and she’s in there. And this job is making her come out and I’ve been hiding her forever.” Although actress Nadine Velazquez is a newbie to music, she shared that she has received an overwhelming amount of support from her Queens cast members and producers. Support and leaning on one another is an underlying theme of the show. “Our show is about sisterhood and family,” executive producer Zahir McGhee explained. “You fight with your family, and these are people that have been brought back together after a long period of time. And we have fights, but we want to see people supporting one another and coming back together. There’s always going to be arguments, there’s always going to be a hierarchy that exists, and shifting.”
Queens is like a unique, much needed breath of fresh air for major network television. McGhee cast multiple women of color to bring this story to life, something unheard of but long overdue. “That is just not common on ABC and not common in broadcasting media. We have to tell the breadth of stories about the experience of women of color in this country. We are varied, we are great, we are beautiful. I think that the time was yesterday for this show, and the time is today, and the time is tomorrow for this show,” McGhee explains.
Named the executive music producer of Queens, another gem adding to the expected success of this project is Swizz Beatz. Swizz has written and produced hits for several award winning hip-hop and R&B artists through the years, including his brilliant, talented wife, Alicia Keys, Eve, Beyoncé and Jay-Z. Creating the Verzuz battles with Timbaland, showed how much love there is for 90’s music. “A lot of people like to put an age limit on our culture’s music; if you’re 30 you’re old and it’s over,” Swizz continued. “Verzuz has shown that it’s not about age. That great, timeless music is about what you bring as a creative – and the access you have to get out in front of people’s faces.”
Join us, we will be front and center for the season premiere of Queens coming this fall on ABC.