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THE MEGAN WARD INTERVIEW – GENERAL HOSPITAL

megan-main.jpg“On-Air On-Soaps” sat down with the phenomenal Megan Ward, who plays Port Charles most fashionable citizen, Kate Howard AKA Connie Falconari from Bensonhurst for an in-depth look into the actress and the character she plays. Megan reveals what’s ahead in this pivotal week for Kate, as Carly threatens to ruin Kate’s comeback in more ways then one! Hear the audio, and read the transcript below for all the scoop.

Listen to the audio:

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MICHAEL

So Megan Ward and I are sitting at Café Mauro at Fred Segal’s because where else would I be with Kate Howard?

MEGAN:

That’s right… that’s because we’re ‘fabulous’!

MICHAEL:

Now, where would you go shopping for yourself since Kate is so all knowing with regards to fashion? Are you like Kate anyway, fashion-wise?

MEGAN:

I am, but I described Kate this way, as very ‘uptown.’ She is very ‘business mogul.’ She has learned and appreciates the culture of fashion, and made a career in the business of fashion which is different than the funky fashion of the street. I am much more downtown and more eclectic as a dresser, and more bohemian. Actually, Fred Segal is one of my favorite places to shop. Kate is a little more glossy because she’s walking into board rooms, making multi-million dollar deals and snagging advertisers. She needs to wear their clothes. So she very much appreciates the avant garde nature of fashion, but as a dresser, she is more conservative. She is a grown up, unlike Megan, who is still a child. (She laughs.)
megan-glamor1.jpgMICHAEL:

Do you have any say in what Kate wears on air?

MEGAN:

I am a team player. I really believe in collaboration, and it has evolved greatly since I first started. Originally, Kate’s fashion was dictated to me, in regards to the more conservative look of her clothing. Since I have been there, there has been a change. Now, Kate is dressing a bit more youthful, but it’s still a very elegant, clean line and not flamboyant fashion. If it was my choice exclusively, it would be ‘tune-in to see what Kate’s wearing day’ because I would wear the craziest things. I see it as an expression of pure fashion. Maybe Kate could get hit on the head and think she is Maxie for a day. That would just make my day. (She laughs.)

MICHAEL:

What about how Kate treats her ‘fashionistas’ in training, Lulu and Maxie? She is kind of mean to them, don’t you think?

MEGAN:

I struggle with it. I am generally not a confrontational person, but Kate is. Kate is really trying to teach the girls, how to do a good job. There are deadlines. Those girls are mess ups and, to some degree, they deserve it, but you like them. So, you really don’t want them to get yelled at. You never really see the back end as to why Kate is bossing them around. You don’t see what it takes to run a magazine. You don’t see the cutthroat nature of the business and the demands of issues being turned around on deadlines that someone needs to perform.

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kate-maxie.jpgMICHAEL:

The film, “The Devil Wears Prada” starring Meryl Streep, is this what the character of Kate Howard on “GH” was inspired by?

MEGAN

I think so, but “The Devil Wears Prada” was inspired by a real person, Anna Wintour. Now, I don’t know if she was an Italian girl from the Burroughs, but I think what’s interesting, for me, playing the part is, Connie wanting to be Anna Wintour, like I want to be Anna Wintour. It’s life imitating art. I am actually trying to take on this posturing and attitude that comes with the job description. On my first day of work on “GH,” I had to march in there and demand to use the phone from Sonny Corinthos. I was a little nervous doing it with no rehearsal.

MICHAEL:

Did you know Maurice Benard (Sonny) before acting with him?

MEGAN:

I had read with him. I knew he was a big deal, but I did not know. I really did not know the degree of the expectation, and that was good, because it is very intimidating. If I had known how fast production went on soaps, I don’t know if I would have taken the job. It’s just so foreign to me. Now I am accustomed to it, and I actually thrive on it.

maurice.jpgMICHAEL

Did Maurice ever throw you in a scene?

MEGAN:

Sure, he does. You never know what he’s going to do. What’s great about Maurice is he is active and present. He really knows who he is and what he wants in a scene, meaning, what the character wants in a scene. So, as an actor you can’t say, “I am going to say my line this way, and that line that way.” You have to know what you want in the scene as your character. And, if you know that, you thrive together and do a dance. It’s almost improvisational. You have to be on your toes because Maurice does not always say the lines the way they are written.

MICHAEL:

To get the part of Kate, you read with Maurice in the audition process. What did you come away with from the audition?

MEGAN:

Well, my experience was like my first day on the set. Maurice sat back. He was the king. I did not see the invisible crown around his head (She laughs.), but I knew he would have a part in the casting. I knew he would be the man I would be playing opposite of, and was the lead on the show. So, I went in like a normal audition. We started to read and, after a few lines, he took a pause, and stood up and then he said another line to me, and I said, “I guess I got your attention, huh?” I just went with it. It didn’t throw me, so the more he threw at me, the more I threw it back at him. His face transformed from being very stoic, serious, and judgmental to engaged, interested, and wanting to do the scene again.

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s-k-wedding.jpgMICHAEL:

The wedding dress Kate wore recently in her nuptial debacle was beautiful, of course, that is, before she got shot in it! I really liked how both you and Maurice looked at the wedding.

MEGAN:

“GH” costume designer, Mary Anelli, picked up some stunning and appropriate wedding dresses. I liked them, but I wanted something very Grace Kelly. I wanted something very classic and timeless and fashionable and something couture, and I saw it, and I fell in love with it. I said to Mary, “What do you think of this one?” It’s Italian, and it’s fashion forward, and it just would have been her pick, if she thought we could go a bit more provocative. So we took the more classic, and the more couture one, and we presented them to executive producer,
Jill Farren Phelps. She approved it.

MICHAEL:

The confrontation scene between Kate and Olivia as Kate was just about to walk down the aisle, before she was shot, was some of your best work. How did you feel about those scenes? Did you watch them back?

MEGAN:

I did. Those scenes made me really nervous. Kate is a very complicated character. If you are paying attention as an audience, you value those complications, but if you just look at her on surface value, you have a tendency to judge her. I feel the writers have done a good job by showing the life and the identity she had created for herself, the one she is obligated to inhabit. Leading up to the wedding, she could have made different choices. That’s all part of her story with Sonny. One of the bigger things is that she made this choice to leave her home. She did not have the family support, and she is honest about it. Olivia represented the version of Connie that she felt she wasn’t and that was a person who would stay home. But Olivia does not see it this way.

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olivia-kalce.jpgMICHAEL:

The fight between Olivia and Kate was centered on a piece of jewelry that Kate would not put around her neck.

MEGAN:

The whole thing was, Kate wanted the necklace, but it didn’t go with her dress. The problem was not that it didn’t match, or was ugly. The problem was Olivia never respected her choices and for accomplishing something
great.
That was a family fight
about Kate not feeling Olivia
respected her and Olivia feeling
that Kate disrespected her family.

MICHAEL:

How has it been working with Ingo Rademacher as Jax and Maurice as Sonny?

MEGAN:

Ingo is a doll. Maurice is great too. They are very different. Mo is dark and brooding and he is a bad boy, who you want to make good. This is every girl’s fantasy and he puts that into Sonny. Ingo is fun-loving and carefree and does not take anything too seriously. He rolls with the punches, and he has a very positive attitude. They are both little boys by the way! (She laughs.)

kate-jax.jpgMICHAEL:

I really like Kate with Jax. Now this week, she and Jax seem to take their friendship to a new level, but things are not what they appear. What happens?

MEGAN:

On paper, they look right together, right? They are a perfect couple. They are successful, social and cosmopolitan, and lead this certain kind of life. But what’s interesting in this circumstance and their relationship is that it had been easy and comfortable. They get on each other about their choices and their mates. Here, they found themselves where they are saying, “I told you so,” to each other. They are a bit drunk. In their wisdom, they think, “This means we’re single,” because of Sonny and Carly, and they end up commiserating. They are at Kate’s fabulous house where she has lots and lots of champagne. Then Sonny comes over and they have a big fight. Jax keeps Kate from running after Sonny, and another bottle of champagne gets consumed. They say, “Let’s not think about what’s wrong,” and then one thing leads to another. Do I really need to fill in the blank for you? It’s sexy. They think they are alone and they are not. Carly is there and she is not happy.

MICHAEL:

How did Carly get into Kate’s house?

audio_icon_small.jpg

MEGAN:

No one apparently locks their doors in Port Charles! Carly discovers them and she has a gun, but doesn’t use it. Instead she dumps a bucket of water on them. The scenes then become about Jax and Carly, and about, “Why did you do this?” Kate keeps interjecting, “This is my house,” and it basically ends with Carly swearing revenge on Kate.

MICHAEL:

But this is just the tip of the iceberg! Later in the week, Kate throws sort of a comeback party for herself for her peers, to let them know she is still a vital fashion ‘mover and shaker’. However, then all hell breaks loose, thanks to a vengeful Carly.

MEGAN:

Jax leaves Kate after their evening together, and then tells Kate, “We need to worry about Carly.” Kate says, “What am I going to do about Carly?” Then Jax sees Kate at the office, and says, “You know, we need to worry about Carly,” and Kate says, “What I am going to do?” Kate is planning a party for herself. Poor Kate, right? She put everything on the line. She lost her job at Couture for Sonny. She has started a new magazine. She got shot twice because of Sonny. Her wedding was a disaster, and it was a public humiliation in a business that is very competitive. So, she decides, “Look at me. I am out of the hospital, and the magazine is fabulous,” thanks to Maxie. Whether she wants to admit it or not, she knows that Maxie has helped her greatly. So, Kate has this big party and flies in her peers to Port Charles. Carly thinks it’s more important that she humiliate Kate. She tries to hit Kate where it hurts the most, and gets a dress just like hers. She then gets Kate stuck in an elevator so she is late to her own party so Carly can “wow” all the guests before Kate arrives. Carly steals her thunder, thus, ruining Kate’s chance to remind her peers that she is still an important woman in fashion.

MICHAEL:

What do you think about the dynamics of the powerhouse opposing forces that are Kate and Carly?

kate-carly.jpgMEGAN:

When I first came on the show, I thought Carly and Kate would become friends. Little did I know that would never be possible. I think it’s an interesting relationship if they choose to explore it, because in some ways they are similar. They both made something of themselves. They both stand up for what they want.

MICHAEL:

But Kate is very much about being in control as opposed to Carly.

MEGAN:

The thing I like about Kate is that she pretty much is an upstanding person. She is very much in control and not messy. Of course, that is Carly’s nature, which is great. Kate is really a grown up.

audio_icon_small.jpg

MICHAEL:

I hope they don’t change Kate into the villain.

MEGAN:

I think there is a point where Kate can only take so much. I think we are at that point right now. She may not always do the right thing. She is so up against the wall and she may need to lash out to get out of the corner. I would not be surprised if we see more circumstances with her making controversy just to rebuild who she is.

MICHAEL:

When Sonny proposed to Kate on one knee in Bensonhurst, she turned him down. Both you and Maurice were fabulous in those scenes, by the way. What was the rationalization for her walking away and leaving him destitute on the street?

MEGAN:

Those were really hard scenes for me to do, because I did not want that to happen that way. I believe in romantic love. I believe wholeheartedly that Kate wanted to say, “Yes.” At the time, there was story being generated that there was a big reason why she could not say, “yes” to him. Things had changed over at “GH” during the writer’s strike and since then, a lot of things have happened. A secret had come out, that her cousin had a baby with Sonny. That was not the secret at that time. So, I had to play something else, that was, she was holding a truth from him.

MICHAEL:

How did you feel about the shooting of Michael Corinthos?

dylan.jpgMEGAN:

I hated it. I thought it was awful, because I am a mother in real-life. I have two children. My son looks very much like Dylan Cash (ex-Michael). So, it was tough for me. But it’s soap opera and I understand why we do have these tragedies.

audio_icon_small.jpg

MICHAEL:

You watched soaps before you were on one, correct?

MEGAN:

I did. I watched “ATWT” since I was nine years old.

MICHAEL:

Who is your favorite actress on that?

MEGAN:

Well, it was Martha Byrne. I wanted to be Lily Snyder like nobody’s business. Now, I watch the show once a week and I miss her. At the same time, I want to encourage her to do something else. The political surrounding of daytime has gotten very complicated. The actors have less and less control over their own jobs and careers, and Drake Hogestyn (John) and Deidre Hall (Marlena) over at “DAYS” being let go, blows my mind.

MICHAEL:

I hear you also like Elizabeth Hubbard (Lucinda). She is a legend, you know.

MEGAN:

Elizabeth Hubbard, Lucinda, isn’t that fabulous that ‘divas’ still exist? Please interview her. I want to hear and read it! To me, the most interesting interviews and actors on soaps are the ones that have been around forever. The stories they have! I mean Leslie Charleson who plays Monica Quartermaine on “GH” was working one day, and I just ‘hanged’ in the make-up room. I was ready to go on set, yet, I wanted to hear the stories. That’s the fun stuff. I hear stories about Tony Geary (Luke), and how much he has been through in life and as an actor. They are the best stories!

MICHAEL:

Have you worked with Tony?

MEGAN:

I have had one scene with him, and one line. He’s awesome. And in the one moment, I was like, “Yes. I am yours. What do you want from me? Yes.” Tony’s got it! He’s the man. But Tracy Quartermaine is truly my hero on the show. Jane Eliot, what an actress! If, Kate could be one ounce of that…. Oh my God! Kate could be the junior Tracy Quartermaine, were Kate given the right circumstances.

megan-nancy.jpgMICHAEL

I always got the biggest laugh when it first aired, Kate’s catch-phrase of her alter ego, “Connie Falconari from Bensonhurst.” I laughed about it for so long. Did you think it was funny?

MEGAN:

Yeah, I did not think much about it till my first day on the set, with everybody pronouncing incorrectly, and then pronouncing it in a way that could not be on broadcast television. In fact, we had to redo some takes because it was not pronounced within the guidelines of decency. (She laughs.) I don’t know whether it’s Constance or Constanza. (She laughs.)

MICHAEL:

Megan, you have such ardent fans. We hear you are doing a “Kate takes Manhattan” fan event in the New Year!

MEGAN

Yes. On Sunday, January 18th, 2009, I am having a fan event in downtown Manhattan called, “dim sum and then sum” at the Chinatown Brasserie in the Koi Lounge. It’s a brunch, and you can find info on it at www.Meganward.tv. I had to have a fabulous event, at a fabulous restaurant, at a fabulous location, just to suit Kate. So it will be fun. I was going to go for a week to the Big Apple, but I can only go for the weekend, because I have a big story taping in January.

audio_icon_small.jpg

MICHAEL:

What can we look forward to from Kate in 2009?

MEGAN:

What I hope for Kate in 2009 is that someone loves her back. She makes some friends. She puts Carly in her place, and she finally gets married.

MICHAEL:

Do you think Kate’s ultimate guy is Sonny?

MEGAN:

I do, and in my subjective personal opinion, I think they are fabulous together because they make each other better people. sonny-kate.jpg

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There was some significant signs that Hollywood and the state of California’s show business production looks to be gearing up for a restart after all TV and film production was halted a few months ago as the coronavirus pandemic hit the state, our country, and the globe.

The reopening for production may not include L.A. County, however, which is the epicenter of the state’s show business production.

According to Deadline: On Friday, Governor Gavin Newsom announced that the state could begin TV and film production as early as June 12th.  While the California Department of Public Health released the following guidelines:  “Music, TV and film production may resume in California, recommended no sooner than June 12, 2020 and subject to approval by county public health officers within the jurisdictions of operations following their review of local epidemiological data including cases per 100,000 population, rate of test positivity, and local preparedness to support a health care surge, vulnerable populations, contact tracing and testing. To reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission, productions, cast, crew and other industry workers should abide by safety protocols agreed by labor and management, which may be further enhanced by county public health officers. Back office staff and management should adhere to Office Workspace guidelines published by the California Department of Public Health and the California Department of Industrial Relations, to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission.”

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For LA County,  on Friday, the same day the guidelines were announced they saw a slight increase in hospitalizations, which could cause delays in getting production started.  “This has been a slight increase over the last three days in the number of people hospitalized,” said Los Angeles County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer, “and we’ll need to make sure that we’re not starting to see a significant increase in the number of people requiring hospitalizations.”

So the question remains: if there is a surge in Los Angeles in COVID-19 cases production could again be delayed getting started back up and running? So what do you think about the June 12th date for the state of California to start TV and film production? Do you hope your favorite soaps get back into production as soon as possible, or do you want to make extra sure that all your favorites will be safe and sound when they tape new episodes?

 

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Monday, June 15 : Sonny and Carly re-declare their love during the Metro Court hostage crisis. (originally aired 2/7/2007)

Tuesday, June 16: Sonny has gone off his meds and begins to spiral. Carly convinces him to resume taking the lithium. (originally aired 9/24/2013)

Wednesday, June 17:  Sonny is in critical condition after being shot. Sitting vigil in the hospital chapel, Carly reads the vows he wrote for her, and remembers their ups and downs. (originally aired 9/14/2015)

Thursday, June 18:  Sonny and Carly get married in the GH chapel.  (originally aired 10/15/2015)

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So are you looking forward to seeing some of the episodes chosen featuring Maurice Benard and Laura Wright? Comment below.

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So, glad to know that this major step has been taken to try to get production back on track in Hollywood and New York? Comment below.

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