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Kristoff St. John And Y&R Celebrate His 25 Year Milestone As Neil Winters!

Photo Credit: HutchinsPhoto.com

Courtesy/CBS

Last Friday, cast, crew, press, executives, and family (including Kristoff’s beloved dog Brando) gathered together on the set of the Genoa City Athletic Club at CBS Television City to celebrate the 25 year milestone of Kristoff St. John (Neil Winters) with The Young and the Restless.

Throughout the celebration honoring the powerhouse actor, several speeches were made all illustrating Kristoff’s unwavering commitment to the material, bringing Neil Winters to life day in and day out, and touching upon Kristoff’s inner-strength in facing the unimaginable for any parent, the tragic death of their child.

It was day of emotions, tears, and laughter for one of the finest actors working in our genre including; Kristoff reading a heartfelt congratulatory note from his father, acclaimed actor and director, Christopher St. John. On-Air On-Soaps was on hand to listen to the speeches and share in the festivities.  Immediately following, we were able to chat with the guest of honor, up close and personal, for some closing thoughts on this special day.  Here are some of the highlights below:

Photo Credit: MF Soaps Inc

Y&R’s executive producer Jill Farren Phelps kicked off the celebration with these words: “In the course of his 25 year journey as Neil Winters, Kristoff has won 2 Daytime Emmy Awards and 8 NAACP Image Awards.  In watching the material that you submitted this year for the Emmy’s, I was reminded of what we all know; you are an extraordinary actor. Neil Winters has been married 5 times, raised Devon and Lily (and Moses too!), and just in the 4 years since I’ve been here, he’s lost and regained his sight in a sensitive and gripping performance while giving us the haunting and heartbreaking portrayal of a man battling his darkest demons in the bottom of a bottle . . . Bravo Kristoff.  You’re a fierce actor.  You’re your own man.  You’ve shown remarkable courage and heart against all odds.  And you are a valuable member of our Y&R family.   AND you have the cutest dog!  Thanks Kristoff.  Congratulations and much love. ”

Courtesy/CBS

Next, Joshua Morrow (Nick Newman) took to the podium and offered up to his co-star: “You are an incredibly talented actor, and I have enjoyed watching your work.  You can tell the true measure of a man in how he handles adversity, and brother, I have seen you slay dragons and stare down demons.  I have seen you rise up and show everyone what you are made of.  It has to be some of the strongest stuff the world has ever seen.”

Bryton James (Devon) in an emotional, and off the cuff speech told Kristoff: “You set this standard of commitment and excellence of every scene I have seen you in, and every scene I have been in with you, and it’s taught me.  You have shown me and guided me every step of the way.  You showed me not only how to go about being an actor, but how you go about being yourself in life, too.”

Courtesy/CBS

Christel Khalil delivered a short speech which included: “It’s so easy to work with Kristoff.  If I have to cry in a scene all I have do is look at him, and I just start bawling.  We just have that connection. ”

When it was finally Kristoff’s turn to address his Y&R family he noted, “This is very humbling to hear these words you have said, my family.”  He then told how his life in Genoa City began: “Bill Bell (co-creator and former head writer, Y&R) said, ‘How would you like to work on this show? I said, ‘Of course I would.’  I had come from the last place show.  I knew Y&R, because I had watched it while I was in my dressing room at Generations at NBC.  The biggest difference between Generations and Y&R was not the writing, but the look of the show.  It was the seasoned actors that are on this show.  It was unlike anything I had every watched before.  So when I got here I was in awe. The first person I met was Victoria Rowell (Ex-Drucilla), and the second person I met was Eric Braeden (Victor), and the other men on the show, such as Peter Bergman who is the ultimate professional.  The difference between he and I is Peter will come out to the stage on a two-scene stand by, while Kristoff is just getting in the shower!” (Laughs)

Photo Credit: HutchinsPhoto.com

Following the presentation, On-Air On-Soaps asked Kristoff some questions about his journey at Y&R,  beginning with the ups and downs of being on a soap for an amazing 25-year run: “Nothing is easy, but when you have a family near and far, it can be rather dysfunctional, and in that dysfunction, you have a happy balance of acceptance and dislike.  So when you do come together for a joyous occasion, it’s all about the joy, and on the set it’s all about the joy. Drama off the set is a whole other thing, even when people at times here haven’t brought the joy.  I was going to say one thing in my speech about one person who told me once; “You don’t have a story.  And you want to be careful, because you want them to make note of you.  You want to get out in front of them, and you need to remind them.  I have a lot of story and I guarantee you that I am the new breed, and you need to make sure you become that.”  I felt like knocking his block off, but what does that service?  That was a family moment between someone that was here, and someone who is no longer here, who thought he would be here forever. ”

Photo Credit: HutchinsPhoto.com

Kristoff on reflecting on his on-screen children; Bryton James and Christel Khalil, and the sentiments they shared: “Like they said about me, I value them like my real family, my personal family.  They have been surrogate children for me.  Everything I do on stage with them, and acting as their father is a piece of me that I have been able to learn from my children: Paris, Lola, and Julian, and how to be a better man and how to be a better father.  But those two have put me in my place a number of times, and stopped me from going off the deep end as a man. Christel and Bryton have been the glue here for me at the Y&R stages.”

Kristoff on if being at Y&R helped pull him through the most heartbreaking of personal tragedy following the death of his son, Julian: “The show didn’t really factor in until I looked out over Julian’s funeral and I saw a sea of my peers and they were all there. That meant everything to me.  I don’t know if everyone realizes that.  I wanted to say things up there today about it, but I knew I would fall apart, and I couldn’t have gone on. I was able to come to work a couple of weeks after being off, and man, it was during that part of the storyline that deserved a personal experience that came from the depths, and unfortunately it was through that experience of the death of my son, that I was able to parlay good performances with people that I love and respect here.”

Photo Credit: HutchinsPhoto.com

Kristoff reflects on his 25 years of storylines; when Neil has languished on the back-burner, or has been front and center, and how he has kept that in perspective, as well as his thoughts on his current storyline:  “I had a lot of great stories.  I also had to mention Victoria Rowell in my speech.  I had to.  But when you have real meaty story it becomes the show for a period of time, it does.  It’s months on end, whereas I have always felt somewhere in the middle.  It’s not back-burner, and then we go to the front, and then we go in the back, and we are relegated to what I like to call, ‘Winters Wednesdays’. (Laughs)  But this past year has been fantastic!  For some reason, this storyline with Bryton and Hilary (Mishael Morgan) has been dragged on longer than any storyline I have been a part of.  I am not sure why other than I believe Bryton and Hilary’s characters became extremely popular, and so the fight has to be for Neil rescuing the relationship, and realizing he can’t, and then going off on a tangent to force it to happen, but I have been the villain. I like playing the villain, too.”

Photo Credit: HutchinsPhoto.com

Kristoff on after hearing the accolades that he is a ‘great actor’, and if he views himself that way: “When you are good at something you can tell people about it. When you are great at something than other people will tell you about that.  How do I dare accept when someone uses the word ‘great’, when there are so many beautiful actors out there in the real world? I am but one of many, many, many. Interpretation is everything. Acting is reacting, and I somehow am able to bring realism to the work that I do. I don’t know how great that is, but I know how natural it feels. I think part of that is because I started as a child, and by the time I reached my adult years I was able to draw on stuff.  Luckily, I have had a great character to play.”

Share you congratulations to Kristoff on his 25 years with Y&R in the comment section below! And let us know, what did you think of the thoughts he conveyed and the admiration and respect shown by his co-workers and friends? What has been your favorite moment in the life and times of Neil Winters?

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Penny
Guest
Penny

So happy for him! Congrats Kristoff!

Emily
Guest
Emily

I love Kristoff and am still praying for him as he now lives life with such a heartbreaking loss.

diane
Guest
diane

It’s ashame they can’t write something better for him to do then fall off the wagon for the hundred time.

Chrystie_Delancey
Guest
Chrystie_Delancey

Aw, he has a Shiba Inu. I love them. They look like foxes.

I was impressed by the speech from Joshua Morrow. It was very eloquent. Too bad his dialogue on Y&R is not as good as that.

Chrystie_Delancey
Guest
Chrystie_Delancey

I would really like to see Neil Winters moved away from this whole Hilary and Devon mess, Lily’s problems with Cane, and get a new romance. I bet Kristoff and Gina Tognoni could be smoking together. Jack is a bore and I KNOW that Gina has more passion than what she has had to stifle with Peter Bergman’s Jack. They are mismatched and each needs a new costar.

Tomas Torquemada
Guest
Tomas Torquemada

Class act. Sadly correct about Winters Wednesdays. I hope he gets a great storyline because he can bring the goods.

Patrick
Guest
Patrick

Kristof St. John : Neil Winters “Bravo” and kudos to his person…for affecting; his, profession and character, being “I had a lot of great stories. I also had to mention Victoria Rowell in my speech. I had to ” Nice I’m still going to mention… one thing came to mind… and it’s CBS / Sony / Y&R PROBLEM… the Neil Winters Clan will always have an asterisk… what, coulda would SHOULDa been rehire her so much of the show would take care of itself… and this means diversity … and you’re welcome from the audience i’ll say it again… Lily… Read more »

Belle
Guest
Belle

Congratulations Kristoff!

Mo
Guest
Mo

Congratulations!

mark
Guest
mark

Love my baby Neil winters!!!!

Wendy
Guest
Wendy

The measure of a man is his compassion and kindness. Kristoff exudes both in his professional and personal life. In my very limited contact with him on Twitter, he has proven to have humility, strength beyond understanding with the loss of his son, appreciation for others caring about his profound loss. Will always wish him well both on YR and in life. His goodness shines.

Mary SF
Guest
Mary SF

Personally I always felt the love story between Neil and Dru was one of the shows best, in fact one of the best in daytime. Unfortunately when you are one half of an amazing couple and the other half leaves the show, most times the remaining half languishes in no man’s land. The fact Neil has stayed relevant to the show even after VR left says a lot to his talent. Winter’s Wednesday may not get you the cover of the soap magazines too much, but he has been a stable of the show for years. I am not a… Read more »

Tani Sterling
Guest
Tani Sterling

Very well said!

jaybird369
Guest
jaybird369

C O N G R A T U L A T I O N S K R I S T O F F!!!!!!!!!!

Michael
Guest
Michael

I remember Kristoff from when he was a kid doing ‘Bad News Bears’. I even told him that I remembered him from that show one time on twitter when I had a twitter account. He was so surprised that anyone would remember him from that period. He’s an exemplary actor and so professional too. He’s had his share of controversies over the years (including his getting suspended from the show for speaking out about the lack of diversity on the show). But in the grand scheme of things, it really doesn’t matter today. What matters is that he’s still a… Read more »

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TONIGHT: 73rd Primetime Emmy Awards on CBS

Who will take home the gold at Sunday night’s 73rd annual Primetime Emmy Awards?  Well, from the looks of it .two heavy favorites going into it are Ted Lasso in the comedy categories, and The Crown in the dramatic categories, but as we have seen on previous Emmys there may be upsets afoot.

Other leading contenders through the night will include the series: The Mandalorian, WandaVision, The Handmaid’s Tale, Saturday Night Live, Lovecraft CountryThe Queen’s Gambit and Mare of Easttown.

Cedric the Entertainer will host the three-hour special on CBS beginning at 8 pm EST emanating from the Microsoft Theatre in Los Angeles.  Pandemic and all there will be a return to an opening number.

 

Photo: CBS

The broadcast’s executive producer, Ian Stewart, confirmed an opening number, when he previously told Deadline, the number “is going to be a lot of people participating, singing, rapping.  It’s hopefully going to be a very impactful start, a ton of fun.”

The Primetime Emmys will have nominees in attendance, with a more limited amount virtually, and those who have tickets can stay in the venue through the whole show, unlike the Grammys or Oscars were those nominated were ushered in and out.  Look for the Emmys to take place outside the theatre under a tent.

Photo: RGoldsberry

One Life to Live alum Renée  Elise Goldsberry (Ex-Evangeline) will be competing in the Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Limited or Anthology Series or Movie for her role in Hamilton.  Another OLTL alum, Jonathan Groff (Ex-Henry), is nominated for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Limited or Anthology Series or Movie for his role in Hamilton, as well.

Photo: NBC

In the Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series, Sterling K. Brown tries to win another Emmy for his role as Randall Pearson on This Is Us.   To view all the nominees, head on over to the TV Academy’s website.

This past June, CBS also aired the 48th annual Daytime Emmy Awards in a pre-packaged show for broadcast due to Covid-19 restrictions.

So, who are you rooting for to win the gold at the 73rd annual Primetime Emmy Awards? Comment below.

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Soap Vet Exec Prod and Director, Chris Goutman, Virtual Interview On Tap

The former executive producer of Another World and As the World Turns, Chris Goutman, will appear on a very special episode of The Locher Room next Friday, September 24th.

To celebrate the virtual interview show’s 200th episode, the Emmy Award-winning producer and director will join Alan Locher beginning at 3 p.m. EST / 12 p.m PST.   You can watch it live here.

Having started his career in the soaps an actor appearing on The Doctors, Search for Tomorrow, The Edge of Night and Texas, Goutman moved on to becoming a director and eventually an executive producer.  Chris has directed episodes of nine different daytime dramas.

Goutman currently serves as the Artistic Director, Associate Professor at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts.

So, will you be tuning-in to see what Chris has to say about his time on AW and ATWT and more? Comment below.

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GENERAL HOSPITAL: Sonny Remembers Carly Just as She Is Marrying Jason

After nine months of being “Mike”, Sonny Corinthos (Maurice Benard) had a major breakthrough as his memory is all coming back to him now (as the Celine Dion song says), and in the process the Tan-O has burned to the ground, signaling the the probable end to the Nixon Falls arc of the story.

As the story picked-up on Thursday, Nina’s (Cynthia Watros) plot to keep Sonny for herself and away from Carly majorly backfired on her.  Not only does Phyllis (Joyce Guy) now know that Nina lied about “Mike’s” identify the entire time, but Peter August (Wes Ramsey) is running wild and free heading back to Port Charles to claim his baby and Maxie (Kirsten Storms), after setting fire to the building.

Courtesy/ABC

Since “Mike” ran in to save Nina and got hit by a beam in the process, he is alone in the burning Tan-O enveloped by flames, but that triggers the beginning of his memory coming back.

Meanwhile, back in Port Charles, Jason (Steve Burton) and Carly (Laura Wright) are at their wedding, with the five family mob bosses present with a plot of their own and everyone wondering if Jarly will say “I do'”.    The two light a candle together for those loved ones no longer with them … ah, Sonny!

Back the burning Tan-O, Sonny is visited by the vision of the real Mike (Max Gail) who tells him it’s time for him to go home now.  A conflicted Sonny tells Mike he is very happy in Nixon Falls with Nina, but Mike tells him he needs to know his past in order to move forward.  When Sonny has flashes of his violent past it frightens him, and he says whatever family he has is better off without him in their lives.

Jax (Ingo Rademacher) tries to text Maxie while still in Nixon Falls with Nina to watch out for Peter, but she is attending and managing Carly and Sonny’s wedding, so she doesn’t pick up the phone!

Inside the Tan-O, Sonny sees a vision of woman, who when she turns and faces him is Carly. While Sonny is lying on the floor and is engulfed in flames and trapped, Mike tells Sonny he can die as “Mike” or live on as the man he truly is, Sonny.  It is then Sonny calls out “Carly!”

So, what did you think of the episode? Do you think Carly and Jason will get married? Will Sonny tells Nina he remembers? What will Nina’s next move be? Are you glad Sonny seems to have his memory back? The episode featured another strong performance by Maurice Benard.  Share your thoughts below.

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GH’s Kelly Thiebaud (Britt) chats with Michael Fairman about Britt being on the run with Jason, their burgeoning romance, working with Steve Burton and her other co-star and Britt’s diagnosis of Huntington’s Disease. .Leave A Comment

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