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Andrea Evans Interview with the Canadian TV Guide

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She indirectly SHITS on Passions, in so many ways!!

All about Andrea Evans


By Nelson Branco

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Our favourite soap star may be causing a stir on ‘Passions’, but don’t count out a return to her career-making role on ‘OLTL’!

Andrea Evans still reigns supreme on daytime

While I freely admit I sometimes wish I knew how to quit Tina Lord Roberts, Andrea Evans (Rebecca, Passions) has given me hope that perhaps I don’t have to. Next to interviewing my icon Madonna, speaking to my all-time favourite soap actress has been the highlight of my reporting career.

Ever since I laid eyes on the beautiful and naughty, yet lovable and infectious Tina Lord Roberts on One Life to Live as a 12-year-old boy in 1986, I was transfixed by the wide-eyed, raven-haired soap goddess. While most gay boys obsessed over Joan Collins or Susan Lucci in the 1980s, I was completely mad for Andrea Evans (which somehow managed to give my parents hope that I was straight when they saw my bedroom walls plastered with her pictures!).

In many ways, Tina was the perfect soap opera character: she was funny, over-the-top, a survivor, passionate, visceral, and of course desperate for love. In fact, it was Evans’ talent, charisma, and star power that made me decide to go into this crazy, wacky business! So don’t blame Canada, point the finger at Evans!

Sadly, the Aurora, Ill., native left OLTL and acting all together in 1990 when a Russian immigrant (damn you, damn you!), who had been stalking the actress for three years, broke into the ABC studio intent on killing her.

After disappearing from the limelight for almost a decade, the Emmy-nominated star surprised us all by returning to daytime as Tawny Moore on The Bold and The Beautiful in 1999. It wasn’t her first time on a William Bell series: she played Patty Williams from 1983-1984 on The Young and the Restless. A year later, Passions hired the star to replace Maureen McCormack as Rebecca, a role she has played ever since.

This past summer, however, after Passions was cancelled by NBC, serious buzz suggested that OLTL was trying lure back the diva to reprise Tina, so I decided to chat with my idol to see if that possibility could become a reality – and you’ll love what I found out! Just be forewarned: professionalism was thrown out the window when I spoke to Evans because my inner fan came out swinging!

TV Guide: What a pleasure to finally speak to you. I’ve been doing this for 12 years, and I can’t believe I have never met you. I feel like Rosie O’Donnell interviewing Barbara Streisand right now! FYI, thanks to you, I’m still in therapy ever since you left OLTL!

Andrea Evans: [Laughs.] Why, thank you! That’s such a wonderful compliment.

TVG: So let’s talk about Passions first before we get to Tina — how are things on the set, now that you’ve switched over to satellite TV?

AE: It’s a little strange. There are a lot less people now. [Laughs.] Things are fine, and DirecTV seems to be behind the show. Soaps moving to cable may be the future of the daytime industry, so [we’re leading the charge right now]. We had two soundstages; now we have one, but I have the same dressing room. Everything’s the same, just on a smaller scale.

TVG: You decided to stay on a recurring basis, and not sign a contract with Passions — why?

AE: Yes, I prefer recurring. [Laughs.] In the past, it has worked to my advantage. Also, for my whole career, I’ve always been under contract, so it’s nice to have some professional freedom. The same week we went to DirecTV, I booked another job, and so it was great to able to do another project, which was fabulous.

TVG: There were all these rumours that OLTL was trying to steal you this past summer when NBC canned Passions. Can you confirm any of that?

AE: All I can say is that there have always been conversations between us. I do feel, at some point in my career, I will go back to OLTL, and I would certainly always entertain that option.

TVG: You tease!

AE: [Laughs.] I don’t know when, but it will happen, for sure. I also wanted to stay a part of the Passions team as they made the move to DirecTV and help with the adjustment. So that’s what I’m doing right now.

TVG: Well, that’s the best news I’ve heard since Madonna announced her new upcoming CD! I’ve always felt that there’s unfinished business between you and OLTL. Also, it’s really a crime that Tina hasn’t been in Llanview; she’s an integral part of the show, especially in Viki’s life.

AE: If OLTL does recast Tina without me, then they do. But even then, I still wouldn’t rule out a OLTL comeback at some point in the future. I do agree that I have unfinished business there, and I think my fans would like me to return to Llanview. And I’m a true believer in making the fans happy, because they are the whole reason I have my career.

TVG: Would it be surreal to return to OLTL and New York after the whole stalker ordeal you endured in the 1990s? Or have you made peace with that time in your life?

AE: I’ve absolutely made peace with that, but as you said, that’s part of the unfinished business. I do feel it’s important for me to go back, work on OLTL, and play Tina once again to really cement my journey. But I do visit OLTL fairly regularly, because several of my best friends in the world still work there. [so there has been some catharsis in the sense that I’ve returned to where it all happened], even though it’s not as Tina but as Andrea. I’m also very close to Frank Valentini [OLTL’s executive producer]. I’ve known most of those people since the late 1970s, early 1980s. I usually see them once a year.

TVG: OLTL’s enjoying a renaissance of sorts thanks to new headwriter Ron Carlivati, who has returned the soap to its original glory. Do you still watch OLTL?

AE: I do. I watch a half hour of it during my lunch hour on Passions. Again, as I said, I will always be connected to that show through my friendships. I think Ron is doing a fabulous job; I agree with you.

TVG: Let’s talk about that other character, Rebecca, you play — what can we expect? Will she still be up to her crazy ways post-NBC?

AE: Yes, she will still be up to her crazy, diva ways. I think Passions is returning to its wacky ways, which is what I think we do best. We lost that a bit, but I think we’re getting that back. Other shows do classic soaps better, and we do wacky — that’s our personality.

TVG: Passions loved to delve into pop culture humour in the beginning, which I loved, but it lost that. Will we see more of that?

AE: Absolutely. The wackiness and campiness will be returning. I think it’s vital to our show’s survival.

TVG: You’re so funny and entertaining on Passions — and I’m shocked you never received an Emmy nomination for this part. Are you surprised you found yet another character that viewers can’t get enough of?

AE: I don’t know if Rebecca will ever rival Tina, but I like to think each of my characters has been memorable. Clearly, though, the two standouts are Tina and Rebecca, who is so much fun. I’ve been lucky.

TVG: You really were a daytime superstar at the height of soaps’ popularity back in the 1980s. I’ll never forget how you were one of the first stars to really bring glamour and fun to the Daytime Emmys with your unforgettable fashion sense and style. Is it sad for you to see daytime wither away?

AE: Television constantly evolves, as all things do, so I don’t see it withering away. If you don’t evolve with TV, you get lost. I remember when I started on OLTL, the VCR was introduced, and everyone was scared about what that would mean, but we adjusted. If you don’t change with the times, then you get left behind. It’s that simple.

TVG: Were you shocked when NBC cancelled Passions earlier this year?

AE: I don’t know what anyone else expected, but I wasn’t shocked, no. The ratings had been doing down, and I think we lost a little bit of who we were. Headwriter James E. Reilly has revived our personality, so I only expect more success for the show now that we’re on DirecTV. I really wanted to be part of the move, and help the show with the transition, which is why I stayed on.

TVG: Do you ever think of what Tina is up to these days?

AE: Undoubtedly, no good, I bet! [Laughs.]

TVG: Let’s hope so!

AE: [Laughs.] Wouldn’t it be sad to find out she became a nun or something?! If she were a nun, she’d have at least naughty lingerie on underneath!

TVG: I do hear Tina looks better than ever these days!

AE: [Laughs.] That’s one thing I’m confident about!

TVG: Does Tina live inside of you; is she a part of you?

AE: Anytime the public embraces a character as Tina was at the time, there is a part of you that is the character, for sure, but, Tina, no! I’m very different, but at the same time, for some reason, she fit very well. She’s more of an old friend.

TVG: So when you married your husband, Stephen Rodriguez, are you telling me you said the right groom’s name and not “I take thee, Cord?”

AE: [Laughs.] I did!

TVG: Is this the best time of your life?

AE: I have no real complaints. I have a beautiful daughter, Kylie, a happy marriage, and a great life. I write a vegetarian column for Healthy Cooking. I’m the celebrity ambassador for City of Hope for their breast cancer walk. I want my friends in Canada to know that all the money City of Hope raises goes to cancer research, which is shared all over the world, so I don’t want anyone in Canada to feel left out. Canada has been very supportive of me over the years. I also just nabbed a gig on VH-1’s Next Child Star, so I do try to keep busy. Life is good, yes.

Published: Thursday, October 4, 2007

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I don't think she's sh!tting all over Passions. She seems to be very measured in her answers with regards to both OLTL and PSSNS, in fact.

I hope she comes back as Tina. I never saw OLTL back then, but I've heard all about Andrea Evans's performance. I can well believe it, too.

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She was very tactful in tis interview, as any pro would be. I hope she comes back to OLTL very soon, Ron Carlivati could give her some really material! I wonder what PASSIONS looks like now as it seems obvious from the interview that there is a smaller crew and only one sound stage.

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If PSNS refuses to give this brilliant daytime legend a story, let her come back to OLTL! The show will get tons of press and she'll get a huge huge story. I'd rather wait for Evans than suffer through one of Julie Madison's awful casting choices. And Cord MUST come back as well!

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