In honor of Daytime Week (the Tech awards were this past weekend, the main event is this coming Saturday), Soap Opera 451 takes a peek behind the scenes of some past Emmy-winning and Emmy-nominated stories and performances.
First up, All My Children's Julia Barr.
In 1988, Barr won the Outstanding Supporting Actress Emmy for Brooke's response to the hit-and-run death of her young daughter, Laura.
When I received the actual script for Laura's death, I remember thinking how beautifully sensitive it was. It made me cry. It affected all of us. But we knew that we would be there for each other when the time came to do the scene.
Chris Goutman was the director the day we were to shoot the scene. He was wonderful and very sensitive to our needs in preparing ourselves. We basically only rehearsed the staging of the scene, which Chris kept very simple and allowed us to do whatever we needed to do, movement-wise, for the emotion of the scene.
And then it was time to tape.
We did the rehearsal just for movement, so the camera-people could see and know where the cameras had to be. Chris gave us our acting notes in preparation for taping. And we began.
The scene was set in Adam's office. Adam and Brooke were both working late at Tempo Magazine. Adam had a romantic dinner brought in, complete with candles and champagne, as a surprise for Brooke. In the middle of this romantic moment, Tom enters with the terrible news of their daughter’s death.
The way that scene was written, the freedom as actors that our director gave us to do such an explosive scene and the emotional investment, both as actors and characters, that we all had, gave that scene the impact that it had – and still has.
People have asked, through the years, if it was hard to do those scenes. I think that we would all agree, as a parent, it was very hard. As an actor, it was fantastic.
Read the entire interview with Barr, as well as a slew of other Emmy-award winning actors, writers, directors, producers and more in Soap Opera 451: A Time Capsule of Daytime Drama's Greatest Moments enhanced ebook, available on Amazon and BN.com.
Coming up tomorrow: Another World's Linda Dano.