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GH"S Daniel Benzali speaks on being revealed as The Balkan!

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

So, as we all now know and has been confirmed, the hypochondriac patient that wheeled into GH and sought help from Robin, Patrick and Steven is really the international crime lord, The Balkan.  And famed character actor, Daniel Benzali is playing Theo Hoffman aka The Balkan for all he is worth.

In his first interview since assuming the pivotal role, Benzali spoke with TV Guide on his first foray into soaps and more!  Here are a few excerpts below!

Benzali on The Balkan’s theatrical style and if the crime lord is a frustrated stage star:  “[Laughs] We actually created a bit of a back story for the character and decided he probably did have some stage experience in the past in some limited way. He’s very good with accents. As Theo, he’s British. As the Balkan, he has sort of a New York street accent. And then there’s even a third accent coming up. I loved Theo’s introduction to the show as a hospital patient — it was way out there.”

Benzali on what layers of The Balkan might be revealed in his emotional life: “What I liked about playing all that subterfuge in the hospital with Robin is that it provided such a contrast to the real character and his goals and feelings. We just shot some scenes where we will see some very strong emotions come to the surface with him — really relatable emotions concerning his family.”

Make sure to listen to the new holiday episode of the On-Air On-Soaps Podcast where we name Benzali as the Power Performance of the Week.

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This man is PHENOMENAL! I was amazed when it was revealed that he was The Balkan & his ability to get you frustrated as a hypochondriac, engaging as a brilliant attorney, hate him in that street sounding voice he takes on as the Balkan and even gaining my sympathy as he hears how Alexander died ( his son ) is indicative of the brilliance of this actor! I hope that he can keep his “Balkan” identity a secret for a very long time to come so we can all enjoy this mans performances on GH. An excellent choice!

General Hospital

GH’s Brook Kerr and Tabyana Ali Talk On: Trina’s Trial, Spencer and Rory, And Their On-Screen Mother/Daughter Relationship

Currently, General Hospital fans are awaiting the verdict in Trina’s trial and just what lengths her mother will go to in order to secure her freedom! With the story playing out on-air, Michael Farman chatted in a new virtual interview with the two women central to the story; Brook Kerr (Portia) and Tabyana Ali (Trina).

As viewers know, Trina was set-up by Esme Prince (Avery Pohl), to make it appear that she taped her best friends, Cameron (William Lipton) and Josslyn (Eden McCoy) having sex, and then posted the video from her phone, so it went viral.

Photo: ABC

During the conversation for You Tube’s Michael Fairman Channel, Tabyana and Brook weigh-in on what’s gone down at the trial including; how Spencer Cassadine came forward with an alibi for Trina, plus how Portia may put her medical career at risk if she brings Esme’s partner in crime, Oz, out of his coma to get the evidence they need to point the finger on Esme.

 

In addition, Tabyana and Brook share their thoughts on the men in Trina’s life: Spencer Cassadine (Nicholas Alexander Chavez) and Rory Cabrera (Michael Blake Kruse), and how the #Sprina has a life of its own on social media.

Courtesy/ABC

Brook also shares dishes on Portia’s romantic relationship with Curtis (Donnell Turner), plus the recent noteworthy scenes between Portia and Stella (Vernee Watson), where GH shed light on a mother’s concern; that racial injustice could factor in to the jury’s decision in Trina’s case.

Photo: ABC

Tabyana also discusses working alongside GH co-stars, Maura West (Ava) and Carolyn Hennesy (Diane), and what it was like taking over the role of Trina from popular fan favorite, Sydney Mikayla.

Photo: ABC

Check out the full chat with Brook and Tabyana below.

Do you want Trina to end up with Spencer or Rory? Will the jury exonerate Trina? What was your favorite part of the conversation with Brook and Tabyana? Let us know in the comment section.

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General Hospital

Kin Shriner Celebrates 45-Year Milestone as General Hospital’s Scott Baldwin

What would General Hospital be without Kin Shriner, who has always played Scott Baldwin to the hilt with unique style and acting chops? Today on August 2nd, Kin marks his 45th anniversary with the ABC daytime drama series, and the series just would never be the same without his four decades plus of performances, making him an enduring fan favorite.

Shriner debuted on GH back on this date in 1977.  Scott’s love story with Laura (Genie Francis) would begin to set a new trajectory for GH. Later, when Laura married Luke (Tony Geary) in 1981, and Scott made a shocking appearance at the reception and caught the bouquet, the character turned to the dark side which started a new era of story for Scott/Laura/Luke and more.

Photo: ABC

Scott is the stepson of attorney, Lee Baldwin (the late Peter Hansen) and Dr. Gail Adamson (the late Susan Brown); although through the years they tangled over differences, the family loved and cared for one another.

Photo: ABC

In more recent years, Scott’s legal eagle courtroom antics are always a must-see for viewers, as well as any time Shriner gets to show Scott’s emotional side, such as the time he learned his son Franco (Roger Howarth) had died.

Photo: ABC

Kin’s scenes with his current on-screen love interest, Kathleen Gati (Liesl) are always a delight for GH fans, as well.

In addition to his General Hospital run, Shriner appeared as Scott in the GH spinoff; Port Charles from 1997-2000 and again in 2001.

Photo: ABC

Share your congratulations to Kin on his 45th anniversary in the comment section, and then let us know what has been your favorite Scott Baldwin scene through the years. 

But first, in case you missed it, check out our interview last year with Kin on the Michael Fairman Channel below.

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General Hospital

General Hospital’s Maura West Delivers The ‘Power Performance of the Week’

On last Thursday and Friday’s episode of General Hospital, the ABC soap opera finally moved the story forward with the reveal to Ava (Maura West) that Nikolas (Marcus Coloma) and Esme (Avery Pohl) slept together, and within it, fans got to witness the beginning of the fallout and the reaction as played by three-time Daytime Emmy-winner and enduring fan favorite, Maura West.

As one might expect, the material in the hands of the mighty West, and the acting choices she makes are always intriguing and masterful.

In story, things start to unravel for Ava, when outside Trina’s (Tabyana Ali) courtroom trial, Esme and Ava have a confrontation.  It is there that Esme snarks at Ava, that she has the ability to destroy her world.  When Ava dares her to try, Nikolas shows up on the scene begging Esme to stop.  However, a manipulative Esme says, “Too late, I’m ending this right here, right now.” After lighting the fire, Esme walks off telling Nikolas to have a nice chit chat with his wife.

Next, Ava and Nikolas go to a private office, and Nikolas tells her that he made a huge mistake. A now suspicious Ava, asks, “What kind of mistake?” Nikolas then goes on to explain how he slept with Esme, just once, when he thought his relationship with Ava had tanked and had suffered irreparable damage.

Courtesy/ABC

What comes after was where West shined, as a sarcastic Ava quipped, “Poor you, seduced by a high school graduate.”  Ava, then launches into that she thought she married a man, but instead she married a spineless weakling, and now she is going to burn him to the ground.

Later at Wyndemere, as Esme is frantically packing her suitcase and taking with her the all-important envelope linking her to Ryan (Jon Lindstrom), Ava appears and a confrontation begins with Ava calling out Esme as a, “conniving little whore”. Esme flaps back that Ava slept with both Morgan and Sonny (Maurice Benard)! Having put two and two together, Ava says she know that Esme is responsible for the revenge sex tape of Cameron (Willian Lipton) and Joss (Eden McCoyand setting fire to her car.

Courtesy/ABC

Ava has wised up from all of Esme’s nasty statements and has come to realize that everything Esme has done including sleeping with Nikolas, feels like a targeted, planned attack on her, and she knows there is more to this story than Esme has ever let on.  When Ava spots the envelope in Esme’s suitcase, she goes to get it, but Esme grabs it from her. Then, with a steely warning, Ava tells Esme that she will be going to the courthouse now to exonerate Trina, and if she doesn’t, Ava will make sure Esme disappears and no one will ever be able to find her alive.

Now, while some viewers may be waiting for a knock-down drag-out catfight, we don’t know what will happen on Monday or Tuesday’s episode, but sometimes it’s more delicious just letting the words and its intentions drive the action, and West delivered the goods in spades in scenes with Marcus Coloma and Avery Pohl.

For all the reasons stated above, Michael Fairman TV names Maura West’s work as The Power Performance of the Week.

What did you think of Maura’s performance in the scenes where Ava finds out Nikolas slept with Esme and Ava’s confrontation later with Esme? What do you hope happens next?  Share your thoughts and theories via the comment section.  But firstm check out some moments from West’s performance below.

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GH’s Nicholas Alexander Chavez (Spencer) talks with Michael Fairman immediately following his Daytime Emmy win for Outstanding Younger Performer in Drama Series. Leave A Comment
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Power Performance

Maura West as Ava

General Hospital

Airdate: 7-28/29-2022

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