via press release:
LOS ANGELES – April 3, 2012 – The Style Network continues to explore the fascinating subculture of all things glam and beauty in the new docu-series “Chicagolicious” which premieres Sunday, June 3 at 9pm ET/PT. Produced by Endemol USA, the creator and executive producers of Style’s #1 hit series “Jerseylicious,” this 10-episode series takes viewers to the Windy City to follow AJ Johnson who owns AJ’s of Chicago, and whose clientele includes a who’s who of actors and models, including Jennifer Hudson, Angela Bassett and Iman. With his staff of hair stylists and makeup artists, AJ looks to expand his business nationally by servicing more elite clientele and solidifying his place in Chicago society. “Chicagolicious” will premiere after “Jerseylicious,” which in its fourth season is enjoying its most-watched season to-date among Total Viewers (591,000), more than tripling the network’s 1Q12 primetime average, according to Nielsen. For more information, visit www.myStyle.com. Follow us on Twitter at https://twitter.com/myStyle and https://twitter.com/StyleNetPR.
“Jerseylicious has become appointment television for Style's passionate viewers, and with Chicagolicious, we have found an eclectic set of characters, including the beautiful city of Chicago, to deliver a new twist and expand our top performing franchise series,” said Salaam Coleman Smith, President, The Style Network.
A multi-platform campaign will kick-off online and on demand in the weeks leading up to the June 3 cable premiere, providing original content and opportunities to get to know the cast. Launching later this month, the “Chicagolicious” show page on myStyle.com will introduce viewers to the unique team of stylists and feature weekly blogs from the cast, episode recaps and exclusive photos and video. In addition, the “How to be ‘Chicagolicious” micro-series will offer fans makeup, hair and fashion tips, including how to create the most dramatic eye, maintain your weave and match your hair to your outfit. New episodes of “Chicagolicious” will be made available On Demand and for purchase on iTunes the day following the Sunday night premiere (June 3).
AJ’s of Chicago is one of the go-to beauty salons in the Second City with an eccentric staff and exclusive clientele. Charismatic salon owner AJ oversees his team of talented yet fiery hair and makeup artists who love to create drama, from the looks they give their clients, to the manner in which they deal with each other. Throughout the season, AJ and his staff of super stylists will create amazing looks for red carpet and fashion runway events and face off against rivals while catapulting AJ’s of Chicago to national success.
Meet the cast of “Chicagolicious:”
Salon entrepreneur AJ Johnson opened his business 14 years ago, and AJ’s of Chicago has become a legendary force in the Chicago beauty scene. Boasting an impressive client list, AJ is on a mission to expand his business on a national level. From launching a new product system, to styling for star-studded celebrity events, to landing a job as a regular style contributor on a local news show, AJ will not stop until he is the “go-to” style and beauty expert in the country. The staff was handpicked by AJ himself, both for their skill and for their unique personalities, and they all share his unwavering desire for financial and artistic success. They are a dysfunctional but very talented crew, and AJ is fiercely loyal to them as he wants his team to succeed right along with him.
A former model, Katrell is new to AJ’s and struggles to fit in at the salon. She constantly bumps heads with hair stylist Valincia who, as a former model herself, views Katrell as competition. Focused on her career, Katrell is an overachiever and is looking for new ways to expand the makeup division so that it will be a thriving success. Personally, Katrell needs to finally end ties with her ex-boyfriend, whom she still lives with, and prove to herself that she is a strong, independent woman who doesn’t need a man to feel secure in life.
Raised in a small town in Virginia and having lived recently in a bigger small town in North Carolina, MaCray is a fish-out-of-water in the big city of Chicago. Determined to be one of the leaders at the salon, MaCray looks to prove to everyone that he is more than capable to take on the responsibility. The first step to making his dream a reality is for AJ to give MaCray the recognition due him for his work at the salon – not only for his expertise with extensions but also as a full stylist.
As the youngest and least experienced girl at the salon, Austin is constantly trying to prove her skills as a makeup artist. AJ sees the potential in Austin and takes her under his wing, looking to smooth out her rough edges to bring out her star qualities. During the difficult times, she learns to lean on her professional mentor Katrell and best buddy MaCray. Above all else, Austin’s number one goal is to find love, and the whole salon is ready to help. She has had a string of “bad boy” relationships that have distracted her from her goals in the past. Now she feels she’s on the right track professionally, and she really wants to find the right guy to share her life with.
Valincia has been at AJ’s longer than any other stylist and believes that she deserves special treatment – always. Once the salon darling, she clashes with new makeup artist Katrell who seems to be taking her spotlight. While she may frustrate salon management with her outrageous opinions and diva-like behavior, Valincia is a master stylist who creates great hair, and she brings in way too much business to even think about getting rid of her.
As AJ chases success, his best friend and roommate Niki continues to support AJ’s dreams but also uses her spiritual outlook on life to keep AJ grounded. Niki recently returned to her hometown of Chicago after living in New York and is looking to re-establish herself in Chicago. With her new age rituals and beliefs, Niki sometimes clashes with the stylists at the salon, especially Q who is motivated by money. Steadfast and true, Niki encourages AJ and everyone else to be honest and real with themselves. As the salon manager, she quickly becomes a sounding board for each person at the salon and is a mentor to the younger stylists.
Q is AJ’s cousin, and as the salon’s Director of Marketing and Sales, her primary focus as the “Money Honey” is to make money. She fully supports AJ’s hunger for fame and success which causes her to clash with Niki, and she is always dreaming up bigger and better ways to make AJ’s a success. On the personal front, Q is forced to make a decision about her marriage of 12 years as her husband continually feels that she puts AJ and her job above family. When both worlds collide, Q must choose between her personal and professional lives and examine what she really values in life.
Howard is the head barber at the salon and worries that AJ doesn’t put enough time and money into promoting this full-service specialty. Frustrated, he decides to raise the profile of the barbering services on his own. Outside the salon, the fitness-conscious Howard offers to help MaCray lose weight while his focus on dating and romancing women also plays a major factor in his life. However, when his philandering gets him in trouble at the salon, his job could be on the line.
A client of AJ’s, Julie is a publicist who specializes in the lifestyle and luxury market. She is using her expertise to help AJ make the transition from a local salon owner to a national business mogul. A former television and commercial print model, Julie was able to successfully transition to promoting high-end events, business and products. One of the things that AJ loves about Julie is how she is a fixture at Chicago society events and charity galas, which has allowed AJ access to this elite social circle.
While finishing her college degree in Arts Entertainment Media Management, Jennifer works with Julie as her junior associate. She is excited for the opportunity to learn more about public relations and marketing in a fast-paced environment. One of her favorite clients is AJs of Chicago, and she takes pride in her positive professionalism and ability to juggle multiple tasks, various projects and the staff’s unique personalities. In addition to her day job, Jennifer fronts a top-40 pop cover band, performing at benefits, festivals, restaurants and bars around the Midwest.
Source: Nielsen, L+SD Impressions – Jerseylicious S4 Original Episodes Season To Date (Sun, 02/19/12-03/25/12, 8P-9P) ranked against Style Original Programs 2012 Year To Date (12/26/11-03/07/12); Jerseylicious S4 Original Episodes Season To Date (Sun, 02/19/12-03/25/12, 8P-9P) vs. Style Prime M-Su 8P-11P 1Q12 (12/26/11-03/25/12)
“Chicagolicious” is produced by Endemol USA for The Style Network. Three-time Emmy winner Alex Duda and Blake Levin serve as Executive Producers. Sarah Weidman and Merah Chung executive produce the series for The Style Network.