We caught up with singer/songwriter Leona Lewis at the Vanderpump Dog Center preview in Los Angeles to talk NYC favorites, animal advocacy, and what’s next for her music.
John Sessa, Dennis Jauch, Leona Lewis, and Lisa Vanderpump at The Vanderpump Dog Center.
Leona Lewis may be best known for her hit songs (does “Bleeding Love” ring any bells?), Grammy nominations, and her recent run in the revival of Andrew Lloyd Weber’s musical Cats at The Neil Simon Theatre, but she’s also an avid animal activist. The singer, who spent most of 2016 living in NYC, lent her voice to record “(We All Are) Looking for Home,” written by Diane Warren. The song is a public service announcement in collaboration with Lisa Vanderpump and the Vanderpump Dog Foundation to oppose the Yulin Dog Meat Festival, a Chinese event which barbarically slaughters between 10,000 and 15,000 dogs and eats their meat. We caught up with Lewis at the opening of the Vanderpump Dog Foundation’s rescue center in Los Angeles to discuss music, New York City favorites, and animal rights.
On her animal advocacy efforts and working with Lisa Vanderpump
“I met Lisa Vanderpump a while ago and we worked together on the Stop Yulin campaign. I know this [Lisa’s pet rescue center in Los Angeles] was in the works for a while. She wanted to do the boutique along with the dog rescue and adoption service. I just wanted to come and support because I think it’s incredible. She is such a big dog lover and she does so much work for them.”
On performing on Broadway
“Broadway was so fun. Broadway is a whole different beast than I am used to—eight shows a week, five-show weekends. It is intense and very rigorous. It was amazing. For me, I wanted the experience of being on that stage and kind of getting that badge of honor.”
On relaxing in New York City
“I went to this Roman bathhouse, Aire Ancient Baths. It’s all underground and it has all different temperature waters, and they have got a cryogenics room. After an eight-show week, I just wanted to be in there and steam it out.”
On her favorite New York City hotel bar
“I love The NoMad. They have really good wine. They have a really good cocktail list.”
On her upcoming work plans
“I just got off Broadway and I am focusing on my own music. I have a couple of features coming out. While that’s happening, I am focusing on my music, getting back into the studio again. I am working with some new producers, which is really fun and exciting. I have been working a little bit with Kygo. I was featured in his show at The Hollywood Bowl, which was really fun. We naturally got in the studio and have been vibing out a bit. I am also working with a few other people in the UK.”
On her favorite New York City spot for pets
“I had my little baby girl with me in New York City, Lilly. I used to take her to the dog water park right by the Hudson River. I lived on 52nd and 10th. It was right by the Hudson, a few blocks from me, so I loved taking her there.