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The Nancy Lee Grahn Interview – General Hospital

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Superlative, independent, smart and one hell of a good actress are words often used to describe General Hospital’s Nancy Lee Grahn. Playing powerhouse legal eagle, Alexis Davis with all her eccentricities and complexities, is just one of the things Nancy does best. But let’s not forget about her involvement and passion for politics and human rights, and her greatest joy being a single mom to her beautiful daughter, Kate.

After languishing on the back burner in the Port Charles canvas for quite some time, daytime fans are thrilled to have Alexis and Nancy front and center. With the arrival this week of Alexis’s newly SORAS’d daughter Kristina (Yup, Soap Opera Rapid Aging Syndrome strikes again) in the form of actress, Lexi Ainsworth, and a new story arc on the way with the arriving Martha Byrne (Andrea Floyd) it looks like our “Natasha” has got some life in her. Not to mention, Alexis’s continued efforts into digging into the past of Emily’s “twin” Rebecca, and getting to the truth, which seems to be keeping this justice seeker quite busy.

On-Air On-Soaps sat down with the Daytime Emmy Award winning actress to discuss; her sometimes controversial past with the powers-that-be at “GH”, a possible Alexis/Sonny romantic rematch, getting to play a teen-age mom and how it mirrors her real life experience, and her frustration at the Daytime Emmy voting process. We also take a stroll down memory lane and revisit Nancy’s time on the classic soap, “Santa Barbara”. The actress also recounts her recent trip to the White House. Yup, “Ms. G goes to Washington”!

Here’s a fascinating and revealing look with Nancy!

Listen to the audio:

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MICHAEL:

What is happening to Alexis? She is spending her time prying into Nikolas’s love life! But she is on to Rebecca!

nikolasAlexis.jpgNANCY :

I hate being a “butinski,” and I have been calling myself “Gladys Kravitz” now for the past two months. I keep walking around the set going, “Abner” because I am such a busy body. Every time they are going to have sex, I tell them when they are going to have sex, (she laughs) I mean the whole thing is ridiculous and it’s not my favorite part of the story. I have to be the nudnik in that one. This is just occasionally what happens, but I do get to show up for work and get paid, so that’s the good news.

MICHAEL:

But now as of today, you have a SORAS’d on-screen daughter in Kristina!

NANCY :

I do. A rapidly aging child. Wasn’t she just six or seven? Now she is my sixteen year old daughter, and she apparently gets into trouble all the time.

MICHAEL:

But when the powers-that-be said, “Nancy we are giving you a SORAS’d daughter.” What was your thought?

NANCY :

My thought was “OK”. And I said to TV Guide, “If they are rapidly aging her. Better her, than me. Then I would get all this practice of having a daughter who thinks I am an idiot, and apparently I am an idiot, because Alexis is oblivious. That’s the new story, that apparently Cristina is a bit of a ‘ho’! She is running around going places she shouldn’t go, but apparently she gets good grades. I, apparently have no idea. I guess that could happen… can’t it?

MICHAEL:

I find it hard Alexis would not know what is going on with her children

NANCY :

Considering how focused she was on her children in the past… yeah, that’s why they are taking a bit of leeway there.

MICHAEL:

Speaking of children, isn’t Alexis’s other child, Molly, being SORAS’d too?

NANCY :

She is being SORAS’d too, and I have not seen her yet.

MICHAEL:

I heard she was going to be eleven now!

NANCY :

Well, what I heard was she was going to be 83 and we were going to age her backward like Benjamin Button! (She laughs)

twogirls.jpgMICHAEL:

What do you think of Lexi Ainsworth, who plays the teenaged Kristina?

NANCY :

She is a sweet heart. Lexi is very petite and has similar hair to the younger Kristina, and not a far cry from Kali Rodrigues (Ex- Kristina). I thought it was pretty good
casting, actually.

MICHAEL:

So this girl is going to be a problem child?

NANCY :

Apparently. She has a daddy and a mommy complex, and it’s all our fault. So that’s good, and it’s like real life.

MICHAEL:

So you’ll be the mother she doesn’t like?

NANCY :

She loves me, but she thinks I am too controlling and that I want her to be too perfect. So she is rebelling.

MICHAEL:

Of the men on “GH”, who would you like to see Alexis romantically linked with? What about an Alexis/Sonny redux?

NANCY :

I don’t think there is anyone on the canvas right now for Alexis. I thought the most interesting time I had as an actor was working with Maurice Benard (Sonny). That was the most believable story for me, and it was how relationships really are. They are not perfect. They are complicated, and in life, sometimes one likes one more than the other. I don’t think Alexis was as ever connected to anyone as she was to Sonny. I think she gets him completely. They are not the love of each other lives romantically, but there is this bond that I would like to see explored more. I mean, they are not right for each other, but the depth of their relationship, I think is what is interesting. That was the most realistic relationship, but that was also the only time they explored a relationship with Alexis.

MICHAEL:

I remember rooting for Sonny and Alexis!

alexisSonny.jpgNANCY :

I have to say it was really popular. It was a ratings getter, if I recall. It’s because, we are both equally matched as actors being competent to work together. It was interesting. There was nobody dummied up or dummied down, and for a lot of reasons, it looked like this kind of relationship could happen and I liked the complexity of it.

MICHAEL:

Wouldn’t Sonny be more in your orbit now that Kristina is going to be causing all sorts of trouble?

NANCY :

Truthfully, and I am saying this respectfully, and this is not a dig at anybody or anything, and so, I want to be clear about that. The pairing was not something our head writer, Bob Guza liked. He did not like these two characters together in that way, Writers get to have a passion for something, or not. Not everybody likes the same thing, and he did not see it that way, and he is the head writer and it is his vision. He gets to decide what he likes and what he doesn’t. So, by all means, for me saying that I “liked it” and he “didn’t” doesn’t make him wrong or bad. It’s neither of those two things, and that’s what happens with writers. I know for a fact on Grey’s Anatomy some actors did not like some things that were written for them, but they liked others things that were written for them. The actor does not get to decide that.

MICHAEL:

You said in an interview with Michael Logan of TV Guide, “I so wouldn’t do that now. I no longer have any interest in that. (Laughs) They’ve beaten me down. I’m tamed.” That was in reference to taking issue with the writers or producers in regards to your character. Is that true?

NANCY :

That’s not to say, I can’t suggest something to Bob, as he is very open. He has an open door, and I can go in their anytime and talk to him He has made the clear to me. But I can go in there, and say what I would love, or ask for some help, but I don’t get a vote in what’s ultimately done. I don’t get a vote in that at all. Even, Eric Close from “Without a Trace”, who is a friend, does not get to decide, and he was on a hit primetime show. Many times, he did not like what he was doing, and other times, he did. Bob Guza just isn’t a head writer, he is also a producer. He does get to decide, and he has given me other things that I did like.

nancyPearls.jpgMICHAEL:

What story of Alexis’s did you like?

NANCY :

I thought the cancer story was good. I would have liked to see the second half of that. I don’t know why we did not see that. Maybe the audience was getting bummed out by it. There could be things I don’t know, or maybe it got too sad and they got tired of doing it. I did like the first half. I thought the way they wrote Alexis handling this situation was believable.

MICHAEL:

Coming up, Alexis puts the screws to Mayor Floyd (John Bolger)…what do you think about this upcoming material you get to play?

NANCY :

I like to see her being an activist and caring about things. I like working with John and I am excited about having Martha Byrne (Andrea) on our show. She is a doll! I love her, and I am very happy to see her. I also have some interesting things with Kristina, when I find her in bar, and I get all huffy! I am a mother fishing her daughter out of a bar who is underage. It gives me practice! I probably will be doing that with my daughter at some point. I remember when I stole a car at 16 or 17 before I had my license, and she does that too, so it’s just bringing back memories.

MICHAEL:

Switching to one of my favorite soap subjects, Santa Barbara… what are your memories of being on the show and playing Julia Capwell?

NANCY :

I have a great memory of it. I was bitching and moaning the whole time I was doing it, but the characters were templates of Shakespearean characters. The difference with Santa Barbara; and its funny, Bob Guza and I had this conversation a few weeks ago… he asked me, “What do you like doing the most?” And I said, “Simple, simple relationship stories, because that is what I feel I do best.” You see, nothing happened with the Sonny/Alexis story other than they were discovering one another and getting involved. She was a justice seeker, and he was a law breaker and that was the story. Simple. So Santa Barbara was all relationship. I really felt with the relationship between Julia and Mason that I had literally gone through a seven year relationship in a marriage, and I had experienced all the sides of it. I was a main character on Santa Barbara in the core family, and on General Hospital I am a main character, but I am not in a core family. I think relationships are more realized in a core family. So that kind of happens on every soap.

nancyTrees.jpgMICHAEL:

If someone never saw “GH”, how would you explain Alexis Davis to somebody?

NANCY :

Well, apparently there is a lot I don’t know about her, myself. (She laughs) Everyday I am surprised. I will tell you how Bob describes her. She is all the things that I play, but I have a shadow side, but I have a big shadow side. I am seeing myself as this normal woman, but I am not. I grew up in a nut house, where bad people did bad things to each other all the time. It’s like Marilyn in the Munster house; you are not going to come out unscathed from that.

MICHAEL:

And I love how they keep interjecting that “Natasha’s” (Alexis’s real name) mother’s throat was slit?

NANCY :

That happens everyday. So that is what I mean. She walks around like she is a normal person, but she is not. She has a pretty dramatic background, and that is why she makes a lot of bad decisions.

MICHAEL:

Isn’t Alexis an “order” freak?

NANCY :

I think she is. I think because there was so much chaos around her life, and she completely raised herself. Her mother died young, and the other people in her life were crazy. She was smart enough to recognize that, and get out. She has had an extremely good education. But, she is emotionally screwed up! I think that would manifest in her relationships. I think she is a control freak and when you grow up in chaos and have to raise yourself, she needed her life to be in order. That is why she pursued law, because there is an answer and law for everything.

MICHAEL:

Are the legalese and courtroom scenes hard for you to do?

NANCY :

It depends if I am menopausal that day, because then I can’t remember anything. (She laughs) It depends on what it is. They don’t ever get to technical. People make fun of me because I can learn my lines by walking up the stairs. I can look at my lines once or twice and kind of know them. No, I can not say too often it bothers me. It would bother me a lot more if I were playing a doctor. I must have been a lawyer in a past life, as I have played nothing but lawyers and I seem to understand the jargon. If I had to start talking about bones, and diseases, they would boot me!

constanceTowers.jpgMICHAEL:

I love your scenes with Constance Towers (Helena) when they happen. Are there more coming down the pike?

NANCY :

You have seen almost everything I have taped with her, and obviously she is one of my favorite people. I love seeing her, as she is just one of the great human beings on the planet. I would love to see her all the time.

MICHAEL:

Something is going to happen to Alexis in some upcoming episodes when she gets caught doing something. What’s up?

NANCY :

She has an error of a judgment that could cost her… her career. It is one of the things I like. I get caught with my hand in a cookie jar doing something I should not have done. It doesn’t make her bad. It’s perfectly understandable and human. Alexis has a life that happens off camera that no one knows about, so basically anything can happen. I do a lot of my living off-camera! (She laughs)

MICHAEL:

You have a major new project outside of “GH” that looks to be coming together. Tell us about it!

NANCY :

We just taped last Saturday, and this is exciting. It’s a project called, Back Talk with Mo Gaffney and Matt Walsh (who worked with Amy Poehler in the Upright Citizens Brigade). How lucky am I to have gotten into this? And everyone knows the Upright Citizens Brigade is like Second City. Everyone knows Mo from AB FAB and Tony Geary (Luke, “GH”) is one of her biggest fans. Along with Kathy Najimy, she had her own show, and her own talk show. So that is what I decided to do instead of what Alexis is doing in the evening. So we will see. It’s scripted/unscripted. I am so excited about this.

MICHAEL:

Nancy, lets turn to your political life. You were recently in Washington?

townHall.jpgNANCY :

Politically, I had testified in the judiciary committee for this AB 16 bill, to help protect children in family court. We are still a far cry from what would be appropriate, but I went to Washington and had an interesting experience. I sat in Nancy Pelosi’s desk, had her private VIP tour, went to the West Wing, and saw that President Obama keeps a football in the Oval Office on a chair. I met with people to potentially do something with the Woman’s Caucus. I am fascinated by this stuff. But, recently it was sad today in California, because the court did not overturn the ban on Proposition 8, and so you are not allowed to get married here anymore if you are gay. I don’t get that… never will. I think that’s insane. Remember in 1921 the constitution said woman couldn’t vote, so this is one of the things that need to be changed, also.

MICHAEL:

Why are you so politically involved?

NANCY :

Because it’s our government to be had! There are a bunch of lawyers who are heads of the judiciary committees in all these states, and your assembly man is a real important guy. He will be making all these decisions with his friends and co-workers, if we don’t get involved. They don’t make the laws, we do. It’s accessible and it’s more interesting than who is on TMZ! We are all so celebrity aware, but the real soap opera is in politics!

MICHAEL:

How do you think Obama is doing?

NANCY :

I think he is doing well. I think he is facing some challenges now, because he made some decisions, and the follow-through was not the way it could be. He has done a lot already. I would like to see him take a better position on gay marriage. I see why this can’t be a priority now for him, as there are very serious things happening right now all over the world.

MICHAEL:

nancyHeather.jpgWould you ever go into politics?

NANCY :

No. First of all, when I watch the assembly, what I would do is lobby. I would find important things. I would be good at going after politicians and making them listen. I could see doing something like that for something I cared about a lot. There are plenty of things to feel passionate about. But, if no one will step up to the plate, nothing will ever happen. Going back on why I would not be a politician, you have boring minutia stuff to do. It’s like being a tax lawyer. It’s stuff that is not exciting to me. So being a politician is not as fun as fighting with them.

MICHAEL:

Alexis’s lung cancer storyline was close to your heart, and you continue to raise awareness and charitable efforts for it.

NANCY :

My father died of emphysema, and I have a dear friend, Doreen Schmidt who had lung cancer. Because I had lung cancer on “GH”, A Breath Away from the Cure sought me out and they are dear friends. They do good work. City of Hope is also a great organization and I do a tour visit for them every year.

nancyPearls.jpgMICHAEL:

How did you tackle playing someone with a life-threatening illness, such as lung cancer?

NANCY :

I can never really do justice to the feelings someone has who is going through it. I made some calls to get some general information. You can just go with, “Here’s the imaginary circumstance and how would you feel in it.” I don’t think it’s too hard for anyone to imagine that. It’s not pleasant to imagine that, but that’s my job.

MICHAEL:

You were not happy with the voting process for this year’s Daytime Emmys. Will you attend?

NANCY :

I will have nothing to do with Emmys this year, because I did not even know there was a vote. A bunch of people on our show did not vote. I was not told. I was not given a ballot. Apparently, you were not allowed to vote unless you agree to be a judge, and I pay dues to the academy, and I expect a vote. I am one of those persons, where if I am due a vote, I want it. There are so many places in time where my vote doesn’t matter, so when I do get a vote, I damn well want it. I wish everyone well. I don’t even know if I was on the ballot, because when they asked me if I had anything to submit… I think I did not have anything. That part of it doesn’t interest me at all; it was the principle of it… me having paid dues and not being given a vote. Apparently, and this was told to some people and not others, because it was disorganized…you had to agree to judge to cast a vote. I don’t make deals with my vote. I understand they need judges, but they have to find a better way to get judges. But I don’t want to be a spoil sport for the people that were nominated. It was a beautiful thing, and it was a great moment for me when I got one. I don’t want to suck the air out of it for someone who is having a good time with it. But for me, personally, I will not be involved.

nancyKate2009.jpgMICHAEL:

Finally your pride and joy…how is motherhood, with raising your eleven year old daughter, Kate?

NANCY :

It’s so much more challenging now. Now, it’s all of my childhood traumas coming back to haunt me, so that I can feel her pain. You don’t feel it once, you feel it twice now when you have a daughter. I feel the way any mother feels about her kid. She is my heart and joy and there is nothing that I can’t imagine that would be better than this. She is a peach. On Mother’s Day, the present she found for me was a song that I loved by India Arie. She learned it and it took her two or three weeks on her guitar, and she sang it to me. It doesn’t get better than that, it really doesn’t.

General Hospital

GH Alum Sydney Mikayla Talks On Her Daytime Emmy Nomination, Decision To Exit & Her Former Co-Stars

It’s been quite the banner year for Sydney Mikayla (Ex-Trina Robinson, GH) thus far, and she topped it off with her second Daytime Emmy nomination, when a few weeks ago she landed in the Younger Performer in a Drama Series category.  That means, Mikayla will be vying for the gold statuette, but also against some of her dear friends and former co-stars from General Hospital.

Back in March, Mikayla revealed she was leaving the ABC daytime drama series to focus on college full-time where she is a freshman at UCLA. With Sydney’s departure came recasting the role of Trina and the part went in to the capable hands of Tabyana Ali, who is currently appearing on the soap and carrying on the Trina Robinson torch.

As the 49th Annual Daytime Emmy Awards are just around the corner (they air live next month on June 24th on CBS), Michael Fairman TV caught up with the very busy Mikayla, to get her take on all things Emmy including: the scenes she chose for her nominated reel, working alongside with Nicholas Alexander Chavez and creating what would become the popular “Sprina”, the factors that led to her departure and more. Here’s what Sydney shared below.

 

Your former co-stars and fellow ‘Younger Actor’ nominees, William Lipton (Cameron) and Nicholas Alexander Chavez (Spencer) appeared on my Daytime Emmy Nominations livestream special, and both share how thrilled they were that that you got nominated.  I know you’re friends with them, but they just could not have spoken more highly of you.

SYDNEY:  That’s so sweet!  I’ve loved working with them for so long.  It just feels so great to know that they said that.

Photo: ABC

What was on your Emmy reel submission that landed you the nomination?

SYDNEY:  I was a little bit nervous this year, more than last year, because last year was the first time that I ever had a storyline.  So, for this year, I was definitely like, “I’m not really sure how this is going to go,” because there’s just so many new elements that were happening with everything that was going on, for example: Trina getting a more acclimated relationship with her mom, and then we had Cyrus (Jeff Kober) come in for a little bit.  I chose the best moments that really showcased my acting, even though it wasn’t a cohesive storyline from start to finish on my reel.  I’m really glad it worked!  I was a little more on pins and needles for this one, and ultimately, it turned out great.

Photo: IG

Was Nicholas Alexander Chavez in any of the scenes you submitted?

SYDNEY:  He was! I got to show that soft side of Trina, which I really didn’t think we got to see, especially in my first Emmy reel, and her being vulnerable.  We never see Trina really make a mistake, so that was really fun.  Not that her relationship was a mistake, but more that we never get to see her slip up or say the wrong thing, or just put herself out there, and put her heart on the line. I enjoyed being able to play that and then being able to put it in my reel.  Nicholas just made it so easy … what an amazing co-star.  He just made me feel so comfortable.  It was just really fun to do and to include.  I also had scenes with the teen scene …there’s five of us! Of course, I had to include Trina’s standoff with Esme (Avery Pohl).  I think, it was actually the last clip I put in on my reel.

Which was a great scene!

SYDNEY:  Yes, and Avery is so sweet, but she plays evil so well.  So, that was also so incredible to do, just that standoff of: ‘Who’s going to win!?  Trina?  Esme?  What’s going to happen?  What’s going to go down?’  No one knew, so that was really fun, too.

Photo: JPI

Did you include scenes between you and Eden McCoy (Joss) as bff’s Trina and Joss on your Emmy reel?

SYDNEY:  Oh, of course, of course! It was some of those heartfelt bestie moments of her just kind of consoling me, and making sure everything was okay between Trina and Esme. I like those heartfelt moments that Trina had with one of her closest friends on the show, and a great friend in real life, as well.

When you found out you were nominated, who was the first person you called … or was your phone blowing up and you were receiving lots of congrats?

SYDNEY:  This year, with being on a college campus and being in person for the first time, it’s really easy to get sick.  So, I was not feeling too great. I was sleeping in my dorm when the nominations came out.  I still keep in contact with my makeup artist from the show, Ali, and she’s so sweet.  We were texting, and she was like, “By the way, congrats”, and kind of kept texting me, and I’m like, “Congrats for what?” I looked, and I was like, “Oh my gosh!  I got nominated!”  So that was pretty funny, and I screamed through my whole dorm!  I posted a video on Instagram because I wanted to keep everyone in the loop, and I really do feel so grateful.  I feel all of the support from my friends, and family, and the fans of the show. I always try to make a video every year to try to just be grateful, or say ‘thank you’ because I really want to key everyone into this journey.  It was a little bit of a shock, but definitely in the midst of not feeling too well, it was the highlight of my day, for sure!  Now, I am feeling that heat of finals at school, but I am so excited. The Emmy definitely breaks up the stress a little bit, so I’m very grateful.

Photo: ABC

Was there somebody you called to let them know you were nominated, though?

SYDNEY:  I actually called Nicholas and William, first, to say congratulations.  William had called me before I had woken up, and then I called him back, and then of course, I called my mom and dad.  It was also a surprise to them.  I think it was just because I had been so laser-focused on school that looking at the Emmy nominations really wasn’t the priority this year.

Could you believe how popular ‘Sprina’ became so quickly?  They weren’t even a bonafide duo yet!

SYDNEY:  I could not!  I was really shocked, but I was excited to see how much the fans loved it, and how much the fans kind of lived through it. That in turn, gave us more of that ammo to really build that story and build that tension, and to always kind of play those moments in between.  Nicholas did a really great job of that, and of challenging me to always have that subtext, under the lines.  I was really shocked to see how quickly the popularity of Sprina blew up, but I’m grateful that the fans loved it for as long as they.  I hope that they continue to love it with Tabyana Ali playing the part.  She is such an incredible actress and powerhouse.

Photo: ABC

You were so popular in the role of Trina, and now Tabyana is bringing her take on the role.  Do you check in on GH? 

SYDNEY:  Don’t cancel me, but no! (Laughs) I don’t have time to watch TV!  I’m very serious.  I’ve just had so much going on here.  I’m also part of clubs, and leadership is also something that’s very important to me.  I love planning things, and when you’re planning things, that also takes up your time.  So, doing that along with school and just trying to keep my GPA up, I just don’t have the time to check in on it.  I think that was kind of part of it for me too.  On a spiritual level, I always believe that you can’t receive other things in your life, great things, acting or otherwise, until you are able to let things go, and so for me, I knew when I was leaving, I really would have to leave mentally and physically. As much as I love General Hospital (and I really cannot wait to see everyone in person, I really can’t wait to have that big reunion!), I really don’t feel like any part of me is still clinging on to General Hospital. I’m so grateful that the audience has also received Tabyana so well, because that’s exactly what I’ve always wanted.  So, I’m really happy for her, and I’m really happy for both of us.  I think we are both in a great place.

Was making the decision to leave GH a difficult one for you?

SYDNEY:  Honestly, no.  I always kind of knew in the back of my mind that it would have to come at some point because as much as I love General Hospital, I’d really been working for college for all of my life.  I wish someone had told me that colleges really don’t look at anything past high school because I was working really hard in elementary and middle school too!  But that’s my point, I’ve always had this dream of, “I’m going to go to college.  I’m going to get that second education.  I’m going to do really well.  I need to get my degree, and possibly even get my doctorate.”  We’ll see if I even want to go that far, but I know for sure that going to college and getting that bachelor’s was really important for me.  So, I knew that took precedence over anything else in my life.

Photo: ABC

What are you studying?

SYDNEY:  Right now, I’m studying sociology.  That might change.  Honestly, as a freshman it’s just been really general classes, still kind of general science, general math.  We’ll see as time goes on if I still want to stick with sociology. So, that’s also been really fun, and just meeting people, and experiencing the college life.

You’re in a gender-neutral acting category at the Daytime Emmys …   Outstanding Younger Performer. How do you feel about that because you’re actually competing against your former castmates, Nicholas and William, in the same category?

SYDNEY:  Coming to college, you meet a lot of people who are non-binary. I’ve always wondered how that would work when we are going to have more actors who identify as non-binary as our generation starts to get older and as we start getting cast in these movies. I actually think we are kind of moving towards the future and in the future, it will all be smooshed together for all of the categories.  We are going to eventually do away with the Best Actor and Actress because a lot of people don’t identify as either.  I think either way, whoever wins is going to win.  I’m just really glad to be nominated, and it works for me!

Courtesy/ABC

If a role came up in a movie or project that interested you, would you do it, or are you just only concentrating on your studies?

SYDNEY:  We’ll see kind of where life takes me.  It would definitely depend on so many things, of course, but if an opportunity were to present itself, it would definitely just be by a case-by-case basis.  Of course, I’m definitely open to doing things in summer too. During the school year, like I mentioned, it’s really important for me to get this degree.

Photo: SMikaylaIG/ABC

Is there any favorite moment you had from your time on General Hospital as Trina that you wish you could have included in your Emmy reel, but didn’t?

SYDNEY:  There were so many good moments!  If I could include any moment, I would include one of the blood scenes.  I had never worked with fake blood, and it was sticky, but ultimately a good experience.  I was acting, but there wasn’t much of me talking.  It was more everyone being concerned for me, like, “Why is she covered in blood?  What’s going on?”  So, I don’t think I included that as much, but if they just wanted me to include amazing makeup, then I could have put it in there!  So, it’ll always be in my heart.  It’ll always be in my personal reel, and I hope that counts for something!

Photo: TimSchaeffer

I’m assuming you like picking out a dress, and then walking the red carpet?

SYDNEY:  I do!  It’s actually funny because I don’t usually enjoy hair and makeup on a day-to-day basis, but I do think I enjoy the creativity of doing my own look for the Emmys.  I get to be somewhat a little different, like a super awesome version of myself.  I wonder, for celebrities who have to go to red carpets every week if they really like it, but for me to do it a few times a year, I really love it.  I love choosing the aesthetic that I’m going for.  This year, I’m definitely trying to do something classy and stylish.  I’m super excited for you guys to see because I’m beaming even as I talk about it now!

The Daytime Emmys are back to being in-person, after two years of being virtual.  Didn’t you have to tape an acceptance speech last year when you were nominated, in case your name was called?

SYDNEY:  Yes!  It was so funny, one of our producers, Nneka Garland, called me, and she was like, “Oh, it’s going to be in person,” and it just like, snapped for me: “Oh, this is going to be live!” I’m looking forward to that this year.  I’m looking forward to seeing everyone, giving everyone real, in-person hugs!  I can’t wait!

So, are you rooting for Sydney to take home the gold in the Outstanding Younger Performer category at this year’s Daytime Emmys? Share your thoughts via the comment section below.

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General Hospital

GH’s Michael E. Knight Chats On: Taking on the Role of Martin Grey, Friendship with James Patrick Stuart, and All My Children’s Tad

Last Thursday night during a livestream interview, General Hospital’s Michael E. Knight chatted with Michael Fairman on You Tube’s Michael Fairman Channel about returning to daytime in the role of legal eagle Martin Grey, and mixing it up with some of the most famous notables and actors that currently and historically have graced the screens on the ABC daytime drama series.

In case you missed it, the replay of the conversation with three-time Daytime Emmy winner is now available.  During the chat, Knight reveals what is has been like to play the on-screen half-brother of Genie Francis (Laura), if he enjoys the courtroom scenes in which Martin had to defend some of the most notorious in town including Nelle Benson (Chloe Lanier), and more.

Courtesy/ABC

Fans of GH are also enjoying the romantic pairing of Lucy Coe and Martin, pairing Knight with another soap vet, Lynn Herring.  Michael shares that it’s nice to see, and appreciates, the writers creating a fun relationship for a couple that is middle-aged instead of always seeing the younger sets escapades all of the time on daytime TV.

All My Children fans, of course, recall Michael’s memorable performances through the years as Tad Martin, where he became synonymous with Pine Valley.  After AMC came to its conclusion in 2011 on ABC and 2013 with Prospect Park, Knight finally returned to soaps in 2015 in the recurring role of Dr. Simon Neville on The Young and the Restless before joining the cast of GH in 2019.

Photo: JPI

During the interview, Michael shares behind the scenes stories of working with his on-screen parents, Mary Fickett (Ruth) and Ray MacDonnell (Joe), his enduring on-screen love story with Dixie (Cady McClain), and the heyday of AMC in story, with his on-screen sister, Jenny played by Kim Delaney. When Michael came to GH, viewers recall he actually got to share an inside moment with Kim and the fans, when Martin met Jackie Templeton, then played by Delaney.

During the livestream, Michael recalled several of Tad’s wives, and when one fan asked if Cady McClain might come to GH as Dixie, and that maybe she could be a woman from Martin’s past, Knight shared that it could be interesting.

Photo: ABC

In a surprise appearance later in the livestream, James Patrick Stuart (Valentin, GH), who has an enduring friendship with Michael, and happened to be at Knight’s house, shared some memories of his time as Will Cortlandt on All My Children. Now decades later, things have come full-circle for the good friends as they share screen-time on General Hospital as Valentin and Martin.

Stuart is a Daytime Emmy nominee this year for the Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series category at the upcoming 49th annual Daytime Emmy Awards, and we took a moment to congratulate him on being acknowledged by his peers for the second year in a row.  Currently, James is pulling double duty shooting his Disney+ show, Villains of Valley View, while also taping GH.

Photo: JPI

Watch the replay of the livestream with Michael E. Knight below.

Then let us know, are you enjoying Martin and Lucy together? What do you think of the idea of Cady McClain coming to GH? Do you want to see more Valentin and Martin scenes? And, what are your favorite memories of Michael’s time as Tad on All My Children? Share your thoughts in the comment section.

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Breaking News

General Hospital Tapes 15,000th Episode; Featuring Genie Francis with Almost Every Single Cast Member Appearing in It

On Thursday, ABC’s General Hospital reached yet another milestone in its illustrious history. The daytime drama taped its 15,000 episode.

During the tape day, the cast, crew and creatives posed for a photo on set to mark the occasion with cake.

GH’s 15,000 episode will air next month on June 17th.

ABC 7’s entertainment guru, George Pennacchio was on set with a first-hand report, interviewing the likes of Genie Francis (Laura), Maurice Benard (Sonny) and the show’s executive producer, Frank Valentini.

From the sounds of it, the 15K episode will center around the character of Laura, and according to Valentini, “It will be happy, it will be sad, it will be dark, it will be scary, it will be fun, it will be thrilling and it will be exciting, but most importantly it will have almost every single cast member in it.”

Check out the segment and on set report from Pennacchio below.

Now, let us know if you are excited to see the 15K episode of GH via the comment below and congratulate the long-running soap for another historic milestone.

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Cameron Mathison talks with Michael Fairman on taking on the role of GH’s Drew Cain, the latest developments in Port Charles for Drew. his busy career outside of soaps and the loss of his mother and his public battle with cancer.Leave A Comment
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