Actress Chantel Riley opens up to TVGrapevine about Frankie Drake Mysteries, her life and more.
Tell me a bit about yourself and career.
My name is Chantel Riley. I am the fourth child out of five. I started in the arts when I was young. I started dancing when I was three. I’ve always loved performing but I didn’t make it my career until ten years ago. My first gig was a Mcdonald’s commercial where I played a back up singer. After that, it was straight to the stage to play Nala in The Lion King in Hamburg, Germany. After a year there I proceeded to the Broadway stage for the same role. I was blessed enough to play Nala for four years. Once that was completed, film/tv was calling my name. I had a role in the file RACE starring Stefan James and was then given the opportunity to play Trudy Clark in Frankie Drake Mysteries, Angela in Pearson and Kate in Wynonna Earp. It has been such an exciting ride so far in playing such different roles.
How would you describe Frankie Drake Mysteries?
Frankie Drake Mysteries is a show filled with suspense, drama, laughter, AMAZING fashion and Sisterhood.
What attracted you to the role?
I felt like Trudy represented a lot of what I wanted to be and what I wanted to portray on television. There aren’t many Black Female leads on Canadian TV. So, when I was introduced to Trudy as someone who was smart, inquisitive, brave and charismatic, I had to go for it.
In what ways do you relate to your character?
Trudy is a woman who cares a lot about the well-being of the people she loves. She can almost come across overprotective at times and I can sometimes be the same way. Trudy is also a musician like me.
What was it like working with such a great cast?
Working with the ladies was just like hanging out with friends everyday. I honestly wouldn’t even call it work. We always found a way to share laughs with each other.
What were some challenges of playing the role?
The one challenge I have with playing Trudy, is her shoes! They are very cute but they are NOT comfortable. LOL
What are some of your favorite memories from working on set?
Some of the best memories I have are when the girls and I all get together and re-write and re-work a scene. I find that those moments are show our unity and power as artists. We support one another’s ideas and leave no room for judgement.
What else are you working on?
I am currently working on releasing my EP. It will be six songs that I had worked on for about two years. It will be coming out very soon.
Tell me a fun fact about yourself.
Fun Fact: I am really into watching Anime and reading Mangas.
What are you watching on TV these days?
Since COVID19 has everyone locked up in their homes, I have been watching a lot of Docuseries’ on NETFLIX. I just finished Tiger King. MUST WATCH!
Anything else you want to share?
It’s never too late to pick up something you have wanted to do. Now is the time. Dream big and keep the faith. This too shall pass.