Thursday, April 14, 2016

ALICIA COPPOLA'S FAVORITE SOAP-OPERA MEMORY

Yesterday saw actress Alicia Coppola (Lorna; Another World) return to daytime as Dr. Meredith Gates on The Young & the Restless.

When I spoke to Linda Dano (Felicia; Another World) for my book, Soap Opera 451: A Time Capsule of Daytime Drama's Greatest Moments, about her favorite scene, Dano cited Felicia's intervention storyline and praised, "I also worked with a wonderful cast who supported each other in any way they could.  Especially on Another World, we were a tightly knit group.  My co-stars in this storyline were the best at their craft.  Stephen Schnetzer, Alicia Coppola, John Aprea, Victoria Wyndham should all take equal credit for making this story work as well as it did."

With turnabout being fair play, I asked Coppola the same question. Check out our interview below!

Alina Adams: What moment/scene/story do you think exemplifies soap-operas at the very top of their game? Why would you say it shows soaps at their best?

Alicia Coppola: I think there are a plethora of scenes to choose from every one of the soaps. For me, playing Lorna Devon on Another World, there are two very memorable scenes. The first was when Lorna sat at Lucas’s (John Aprea) deathbed and the second was when we find out Lorna had been raped.

Both scenes, both storylines, actually, pull from two of life’s most difficult, demanding and devastating life moments. In these moments, I think the writers, directors and actors of Another World told very truthful, sincere stories with dignity and integrity. That is Soap Opera work at its very finest.

AA: What was it like shooting those scenes? How did you prepare? How much was carefully planned out and how much spontaneously rose up in the moment?
        
AC: This is an interesting question. Prior to shooting the Lucas dying scenes, I was very scared because my own father had passed away two months before I got the job as Lorna. I sat with my father as he lay dying in life and then had to go to work and do the same thing. I don’t think the producers and writers knew what I had just been thru, so it really was a strong case of Art imitating Life. I remember Janet Iacabuzio, one of the writers who wrote the scenes, wrote me a letter telling me she had no idea that I had lost my father and that she was there to support me and love me through these very difficult days of work. I still have that letter and whenever I find myself having a blue day, I reread it. It has become an inspirational touchstone for me.

Those scenes, holding John’s hands, staring into a face that coincidentally resembled that of my dad’s, and feeling those feelings of loss and abandonment all over again, was at once cathartic and emotionally psychological torture. I recall John trying not to cry during the scenes and me trying not to vomit. John was enormously kind, supportive and loving and took care of me in those scenes the way my own father did right before he died. In his silence, in his stillness was a strength that I was able to pull from. Those scenes are some of my favorite work.

To read Coppola's memories of Lorna's rape storyline, click here

And for other soap-opera memories from daytime's top actors, writers and producers, get a free preview of Soap Opera 451: A Time Capsule of Daytime's Greatest Moments at this link.       

1 comment:

BeLynda Smith said...

Alicia (as well as the rest of the AW cast) is one of the finest actors to have ever graced my television screen. Her Lorna moved me.