She’s synonymous with daytime drama for her memorable roles as: Tina Lord on One Life to Live, Tawny Moore on The Bold and the Beautiful, Patty Williams on The Young and the Restless, and Rebecca Hotchkiss Crane on Passions. While soap fans dearly miss seeing Andrea Evans every day on their screens, the talented and clever actress has been busy with films, and her own projects.
In her latest entertainment adventure, Hidden Gems, Andrea, along with her producing partner Minh Collins, have created a new concept for a “unique” travel show, which has comedic actress Tara Erickson along for the ride with Evans. These two very disparate women come together and check out some of the more intriguing, fabulous, and little-known places in America, and seem to get themselves in a whole heap of trouble while doing it! As Andrea details, think of the 1991 motion picture classic Thelma and Louise as a sort of prototype for Hidden Gems.
On-Air On-Soaps caught up with Evans to find out details about the Hidden Gems Indiegogo campaign, and how fans can participate in the series fundraising efforts. Plus, this being the 48th anniversary week of the beloved One Life to Live, Andrea discusses some of her most famous scenes, reflecting on her time there, and working alongside daytime legend Erika Slezak (Viki), and what she has thought of Stacy Haiduk’s turn in her former role as Genoa City’s Patty Williams. In addition, you will learn what soap opera Evans could see herself on in the future. So, let’s hit the road with Andrea, and find out what she had to say about it all.
So watching the Indiegogo teaser for Hidden Gems, it seems like a reality show, crossed with some scripted elements, and crossed with travel. How would you explain the concept?
ANDREA: It’s kind of a weird hybrid. I worked with this director on a film and we hit it off so well that we started our own production company, and optioned a couple of films, and came up with this show idea, because I love to travel, and he loves to travel. We found that we both had gone to the same places that nobody ever heard of, and had great times. So, that is how the Hidden Gems idea was born. However, when we started shooting it we hired Tara to come with us. She was so fun and wild. Then strange things started to happen on the shoots. We then kind of altered what we were doing from a simple travel show to a “Thelma and Louise” hit the road. I think fans will see me in a different way than they have before, which is me out on the road having fun, and being a little wild and crazy with Minh and Tara. They will catch me reacting to things, and it’s not entirely scripted. You won’t just hear, and I don’t want to hear, that the “Ritz Carlton is a beautiful hotel.” (Laughs)
When watching the teaser, I thought it was a very fun amped-up version of “Andrea Evans” you were playing. Is that how you view it?
ANDREA: Well, (laughs) it’s not the glamour puss that people are use to seeing me play, but I love to travel, and I have a little rebellious side. And as I say in the clip on the teaser, “I’m going rogue a little bit.” In my off-soap career, I like to have fun, and do projects that interest me. This was a riot to shoot. The whole reason we are on Indiegogo is that we have some interest and a showrunner. If you look at travel shows there is no “Thelma and Louise” about two women traveling. One way to protect ourselves, and our idea, and our concept, is to shoot a few episodes ourselves first, which is why we are doing the Indiegogo campaign.
How did you find your on-screen sidekick, Tara Erickson?
ANDREA: We had auditions, and talked with people. When I met her we instantly clicked. I thought she was hysterically funny. She is very different from me, so we wanted that. We wanted someone quirky and still attractive, and to have someone else in a bathing suit, because God knows, I hung up my bikini a while ago! (Laughs) I wore my bikini and my underwear on TV enough! (Laughs) As for the reference to “Thelma and Louise”, I am more the Susan Sarandon to her Geena Davis. But, at the same time in the teaser, I don’t tell my husband where I’m going! Tara is more of a comedic actress, and I am known, whether I am funny or not, as a soap actress.
How much funding do you hope to raise through the Indiegogo campaign?
ANDREA: It’s a flexible goal, but we need about $4-$5,000 per episode just to complete them. We try to put perks in there that we think those who contribute, and my fans will be interested in, and would like. One of the biggest perks is that they could be on the show, and part of one of the road trips.
Where would you like to shoot and travel to, if you make more episodes?
ANDREA: We have been researching travel places to go that are luxurious, fun, and a bit weird, and places people don’t even know about. For instance: we have been researching route 66, and in Nevada there are all types of “alien” things that people don’t even know about. There are crazy mansions in Northern California with doors, stairs, and rooms that were built, because the “spirits” told people to do that to protect themselves! We are going to shoot right now in the U.S., but we would love to eventually shoot out of the country, because there are so many unique and unknown places around the world.
One Life to Live celebrates its 48th anniversary this Friday on July 15th. It premiered on that date back in 1968. I was thinking about you, and if it was still around, or was revitalized again, it would be great if Tina could come back and drop right back in the story!
ANDREA: Oh, absolutely! One Life to Live is one of the great loves of my life. I miss it dearly. I think it’s a crime they took it off the air. Happy 48th to One Life! I know it still lives in a lot of people’s hearts.
Recently, I came across a clip from One Life, which was the set-up of the Marco Dane (the late Gerald Anthony) murder! Looking back on it, it was still one of the best stories ever plotted, and there was you and Erika Slezak in the middle of it. Wasn’t Tina being framed by Marco via a porn picture? (Laughs)
ANDREA: What happened was Marco Dane was putting innocent 16-year-old Tina’s face on naked women and making porn! Viki found out about it.
Do you ever talk to, or stay in touch with, Erika Slezak?
ANDREA: Not that I talk with her a lot. However, I was very touched when my mother passed about a year and half ago. Erika really worked hard to locate me through people and to find me, and it was so nice to hear from her. She was sending me her love and condolences. Erika knew my mother, because when I started on One Life I was so young. She got to know my mother very well, and it was so sweet of her to do that. Erika is a lovely woman. It’s a shame she is not on TV. She is so talented, and wonderful. So much about what I learned in this industry I learned from her. She should be working and current. I am just sorry that no one else has realized that and put her back on TV, because she should be there.
Every time I have been a segment producer for the Daytime Emmys, and they are looking to do a clip package from classic moments from the soap, one would always come across footage of Tina going over the Igazu Falls in Argentina! It’s still iconic years and years later. Where do all of those scenes sit with you when you reflect back on your time on One Life to Live?
ANDREA: I started on the show so young, and I have to be honest, I was not even aware of the show before I started appearing on it. But One Life to Live became such a huge part of my life and my career. It’s funny, you see people who become very indentified with a character, and that character is indelibly created in people’s minds. Some people resent it, and some people love it. I personally love it. I take great pride in it, and I take great pride that my audience, whom I love, still adores it. To be iconic in anyway in this industry is a blessing, and a huge, huge compliment.
What do you think of what happened to your former Y&R character Patty Williams since you have been gone from that role? She is “crazy Patty” now, as played by Stacy Haiduk!
ANDREA: Not only was there a change in the character, but she grew quite tall! (Laughs) Patty went crazy! I remember I went back to Y&R as Tawny from B&B one day, which was really strange. And Stacy was on the same day, so it was kind of weird, but we did not share scenes together. Tawny was looking for Amber before she returned to The Bold and the Beautiful. Originally, I was not available to reprise Patty, because I was working, but I think Stacy did a really, really good job, and the character had gone an entirely different way.
Would you go back to doing a soap if a part came up?
ANDREA: It’s not like I have been away from the soaps for too long, but yes, absolutely. They are always a part of my life. I love them! I would be more than happy to return to The Bold and the Beautiful, or do one of the two shows I have not appeared on yet: General Hospital, or Days of our Lives. I love the medium, and I totally support it. Yes, I love doing other things, and have been building up my film portfolio, but daytime is always a part of my life.
If they could write a really good part for you on Days of our Lives, I could see you shaking things up in Salem. What do you think?
ANDREA: You know the truth is: Days of our Lives is a soap I have always wanted to do, because I think I would fit in it really well. I also have to say I am very protective of my career, and my brand, and my fans. And for me to come back to do something, it doesn’t have to be a role that goes on forever, it could be a short run role that has a certain amount of pop to it. I would choose a role that is important, and that has to be right.
Tawny Moore was great trailer trash on B&B! Would you say that she was one of your favorite roles of your career, as well?
ANDREA: I loved Tawny, and I had been assured she would be coming back to the canvas at some point. Adrienne Frantz (Amber) and I have remained very close.
To sum it up, for us to see more antics from Andrea Evans, what are your hopes for your project, Hidden Gems?
ANDREA: I hope people will love, and support it, and hopefully be on it!
Watch Andrea’s Indiegogo campaign video for Hidden Gems below. Then let us know what you think of the concept? Would it be fun to travel with Andrea and her crew during filming? What did you think about her sentiments on One Life to Live, playing Tina Lord, and Erika Slezak? Would you love to see her return to daytime on Days of our Lives, GH, or back as B&B’s Tawny? Share your thoughts in the comment section below!