It’s been about two years since I last interviewed Kassie De Paiva (Blair, OLTL) and there was a lot to catch up on. But something happened that only reinforced my initial thoughts about One Life to Live’s saucy and sassy vixen. She’s a great gal! She is nothing like Blair.
In Los Angeles for the Daytime Emmy’s, dePaiva and two of her co-stars, Kathy Brier (Marcie) and Renee Goldsberry (ex-Evangeline) decided to treat their fans to a rousing night of music and laughter.
First-rate and first class is the best way to describe the concert. However, it was what happened after the music that took me by surprise. The energy in the room was like a lightening bolt. Even though it was well after 10:30PM, everybody seemed to get their second wind and it was as if a another party was just beginning. dePaiva’s loyal fans, waited in long lines just to get her to sign her CD, I Want To Love You, chat, or share a hug. She took time with each person. Her patience, care, and devotion to her fans runs just as deep as their feelings for her.
Some of these folks were on the road for as long as two or three hours, driving from as far as Bakersfield and Palm Springs, and then stuck in LA's infamous traffic. "People take time out of their life for me, who am I not to say? I would love to take a picture of you."
She’s not obligated to give, "But I want to. I love what I do and I appreciate anyone who loves what I do."
She knows how blessed she is and how fortunate she is to have such a great, strong fan base. It’s part of the great character she plays and part of the great people who watch. “It takes both!”
DePaiva doesn’t think prime time and movie actors have the same association with their fans that daytime actors do. "Daytime fans are like country fans. They are very specific and extremely loyal. They believe in us. They read about us in magazines. They know about our personal lives as well as our character’s lives. They’re invested emotionally."
For every ten women in the audience, there was probably one man. “I didn’t even notice that." But the statistic didn't surprise her. Since women are the ones who are home most of the time, dePaiva believes, "They relate to the fantasies of the daytime dramas. If my character can help them forget about some of their worries and -- God knows, they don’t walk in Blair’s shoes. Well, maybe they do," she laughs at the thought, "When they’re sleeping with Christian. But, it’s all fun and soap watchers realize the reality is not what it is. They appreciate it, embrace it, and most of all want to share in the celebration of it.” In dePaiva's estimation, all fan events are like that, at least hers are. They honor what she does through the character of Blair.
The week before the Emmy's, dePaiva was in Nashville singing her heart out. Many people in the audience had no idea she toiled in daytime. She's got a whole crop of new fans who appreciate not only her music, but hopefully her acting chops. “I love that!”
What makes singing so special is the chance to do something out of the box, something unexpected. dePaiva loves to perform and she loves to be appreciated, especially by people who not only love the daytime characters, but embrace what they do in their personal lives and personal endeavors, "Whether it’s music, or even my Happy Hats.” Several people brought them along and dePaiva threw one for the pictures. With summer temps reaching into the 90’s it looked a little odd, but what the hey.
Getting a glimpse of the person behind Blair is a real kick. But each and everyone who wants to meet Kassie dePaiva, wants to know what's in store for the woman who made her famous. Well, Blair’s on the search for Todd. She will find Todd. Todd and Blair will be re-united, but how that happens is unclear since One Life has a new head writer. “I certainly am glad that Trevor signed his contract. I’m glad he’s back. It’s going to be great.”
What is dePaiva going to share about her dressing roommate, Renee Goldsberry? Is she leaving or not? “I don’t know. I don’t think that that’s definite. But, I think that Evangeline’s a prominent character. Renee is a prominent force in the cast and I totally adore her. Everyone does." Time is at the crux of the problem. "She wants a two year contract. The show wants her for four. I don’t blame them, but at the same time I don’t blame her. She’s got a viable career that she wants to establish and she’s young enough to do it. I hope she comes back because I miss her. She’s my touchstone and she’s my buddy. We laugh, and we giggle, and we talk girl talk. I never get any work done when she’s in the dressing room, ‘Shut-up, I gotta learn my lines. I gotta put my make-up on, stop making me laugh.’ We have a fantastic time.”
Alerting all Starr and Blair fans! dePaiva sang one song over the course of Prom Night: The Musical. It was very poignant, very heartfelt and very mother-daughter. She cried singing it. So, she imagines everyone at home, might have the same reaction. Did you?
By the time we finished the interview it was almost midnight, fans were still milling around, but we were all zonked. DePaiva really wanted to dash, she had an early morning golf date, followed by preparations for the Emmy's and the show itself. She couldn't wait to celebrate a very good year on the Emmy nominated on One Life to Live with her friends and fans!
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