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Entries in Television (93)

Monday
May152017

Call Redialed: Facetime Interview: Annie Golden: Ripcord, Difficult People, Joe's Pub Concert

Annie Golden & "Call Me Adam" at The Algonquin Hotel in NYCLive from The Algonquin Hotel, in the heart of NYC's theatre district, "Call Me Adam" catches up with Broadway & Orange is the New Black star Annie Golden!

In this NEW interview, Annie & I go The Full Monty with Ripcord at Huntington Theatre, Joe's Pub in August, and her guest starring role on Difficult People! (Our Orange is the New Black interview will be released in mid-June). 

First up, we discuss Annie's role in David Lindsay-Abaire's Ripcord which will be playing Boston's Huntington Theatre from May 26-June 25! Click here for tickets!

Then we discuss Annie's return to the concert stage with Annie Golden Friends & Family on August 25 at Joe's Pub + the writing of her original song "Hard Lesson" about 9/11. Click here for tickets!

Finally, we get a sneak peak at Annie's guest starring role on the third season of Hulu's Difficult People!

For more on Annie Golden follow her on Facebook!

Call Me Adam's NEW interview with Annie Golden:

Huntington Theatre Company's Ripcord Sneak Peak:

Sunday
May072017

Call Answered: Sherri Saum: "The Fosters" on Freeform TV

Sherri Saum, Photo Credit: "The Fosters"/Freeform TVFrom The Brady Bunch to Diff'rent Strokes to This Is Us, family TV shows are some of my favorite ones to watch. I love the wide range of family dynamics each show offers. I always see some aspect of my own family in these shows, but am also opened to the different kinds of families out there.

One series I have been enjoying is The Fosters on Freeform TV. I love the show's heart and soul. The realness of the storylines, the braveness of the actors bringing these characters to life, and most of all, the way it pulls on my heartstrings. I was over the moon when I called and Sherri Saum answered. It was great learning what Sherri loves about the show, how it relates to her own life, and what roles she didn't book as well as one role that made her jump up and down with excitement! The Fosters 5th Season begins July 11 on Freeform TV!

Follow Sherri on Twitter and Instagram!

For more on The Fosters visit http://freeform.go.com/shows/the-fosters and follow the show on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram!

1. For the past 5 seasons, you have been starring in the original TV series The Fosters, which is about teenager, "Callie Jacob," who is placed in a foster home with a lesbian couple (your character "Lena" being one of the lesbians) and their blend of biological, adoptive and foster children. What initially made you want to be part of this show? What has kept you interested in staying on the show after 5 seasons? I was so impressed with the authenticity and fearlessness of the pilot. And the quality of storytelling has remained incredibly strong after all these seasons.

2. What did you relate to most about "Lena" during Season 1 and what do relate more to about her now, being in Season 5? I relate to "Lena's" compassion - I love that I get to be a warm embrace - and I hope the audience feels it as well.

Sherri Saum as "Lena" on "The Fosters", Photo Credit: "The Fosters"/Freeform TV3. What have you learned about family from starring on this show? I've learned about the power of communication - I come from a very loving supporting family, but talking about the nitty gritty was never one of our strengths. I'm going to try to bring what The Fosters has taught me to my own kids.

4. What has been the most challenging storyline for you to learn? Which one has been the most fun that you wish didn't have to end? Dealing with "Lena" losing her child was excruciating - especially since I was actually pregnant in real life as we were filming. I loved the times we welcomed Rosie O'Donnell's character onto the show - she's such a talent.

Sherri Saum as "Lena" on "The Fosters"5.  As a mother, wife, and leading actress in a hit show, how do you balance work/life? I balance the way so many other millions of moms do. Sometimes great, sometimes not so great. I always wonder why men never get asked that question! It should be just as much of a juggle and concern for them.

6. How did having kids change you as person? I just feel things a lot deeper. I can't read stories or see movies where a child gets hurt. It's an overwhelming feeling of worry sometimes. But I also am called to be the best version of myself more than I have ever been. I want them to be proud of me.

Teri Polo and Sherri Saum behind-the-scenes, Photo via "The Fosters" co-creator Bradley Bredeweg7. On "Call Me Adam" I have a section called One Percent Better, where through my own fitness commitment, I try to encourage people to improve their own life by one percent every day. What is something in your life that you want to improve by one percent better every day? My procrastination

8. You've had quite a career in television, starring in several multi-season TV shows as well as guest stints on many others. What do you like about guest-starring on a show over being a series regular? I enjoy guest starring because it's like being invited over for a play date with all new toys in the sandbox. But there really is nothing like the security and family feeling you get when you work as a series regular. Especially when you love your cast mates and crew as much as I do!

9. What is one role that you really wanted to get, but didn't? Which role did you book that made you jump up and down and scream out loud? I remember auditioning for Avatar in the role that went to Zoe Saldana. That one stung. I jumped up and down for an HBO series I booked called In Treatment with Gabriel Byrne.

Sherri SaumMore on Sherri:

Prior to The Fosters, Sherri starred on the Golden Globe nominated HBO series In Treatment, spent two seasons on the Emmy nominated series Rescue Me starring Denis Leary and starred on Showtime’s critically acclaimed series Beggars and Choosers as well as The John Cassevettes Award nominated Anne B. Real. Memorable guest starring roles include RevengeUnforgettableArmy WivesBody of ProofCSI: NYLaw and Order: Criminal IntentLaw and Order: Trial By Jury and Charmed among others. Film Roles include Ten Stories Tall opposite Josh Hamilton and Relative Stranger starring Eric La Salle and Cicely Tyson.

Sherri was born and raised in Dayton, Ohio and attended Ohio State University and NYU pursuing a degree in psychology. While in school, Sherri landed her first lead role on Aaron Spelling’s serial, Sunset Beach for which she earned a daytime Emmy Nomination for Outstanding Younger Actress.

Tuesday
Mar072017

Call Answered: Sonia Blangiardo: Tainted Dreams on Amazon

Sonia BlangiardoI was a HUGE All My Children fan. I started watching the show because Eden Riegel's character "Bianca" was going to be coming out as a lesbian. From the first moment I watched that storyline I was hooked. I then became engulfed in everyone's storyline from "Greenlee and Leo" to the return of "Kendall" to "Krystal and Babe" to the start of "Fusion," I was loving every moment.

In 2013, I first got wind of a new show being developed called Tainted Dreams, directed and produced by Sonia Blangiardo, and starring All My Children's Alicia Minshew, Michael Lowry, Terri Ivens, Walt Willey, and Bobbie Eakes. I couldn't wait to see this show. After four years of waiting, Tainted Dreams has found a home on Amazon (now Emmy nominated)! In addiiton to the above, Tainted Dreams also features Natalia Livingston, Austin Peck, Colleen Zenk, Grant Aleksander, theatre favorite Anthony Wilkinson, along with a host of other soap stars. If you are a soap fan, Tainted Dreams is the show for you! Watch it now on Amazon!

Come behind-the-drama to find out the real stories that made Sonia such a success + the tales that helped create Tainted Dreams!

For more on Tainted Dreams be sure to visit http://tainteddreams.com and follow the show on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram!

Cast of "All My Children"1. Who or what inspired you to become director/producer? Ever since I can remember, I always was creating stories in my head. One year when I was about nine, my brother, cousins and I were vacationing together. I sketched out a musical with six or seven performances and I forced them to put on a "show" for our family. I can't imagine it was very good! I don't think I could have even begun to understand what directing and producing was at the time, but in retrospect, I think the inspiration came from an overactive imagination and a need to be in charge!

2. Most people are lucky to work on one television show, but you have had the good fortune of working on five iconic soap operas All My Children, One Life to Live, As the World Turns, General Hospital & currently, Days of Our Lives. What do you enjoy most about working in the soap world? Everything...I love the genre, the pace, the efficiency of the way we work...I love that we keep telling stories with characters that have been a part of our lives for many years. I love that day in and day out you get to work with the same group of people that truly are your family and we get to create. We are all there for each other during our milestones in life...weddings, births, birthdays...it is a unique and beautiful experience.

3. In addition to Days of Our Lives, you are also the creator/director of the new Emmy nominated web series Tainted Dreams, about the twists and turns of life on a soap opera. What made you want to create this show? They say write what you know and this was a world I felt that I knew pretty well. I truly believed that at times, what was happening behind the camera was more fascinating that in front. I also wanted to show how much fun we had. We worked in a creative, yet structured environment. I don't think any other genre can say this. Going to work every day to see my "family" was a amazing part of my life and I thought that was something that would appeal to the audiences. I am so thrilled that thanks to Amazon, these stories can finally be seen.

4. I was attracted to Tainted Dreams because of Alicia Minshew and Terri Ivens, whom I LOVED on All My Children as well as Walt Willey and Bobbie Eakes. The show also casts actors from other soaps you worked on and the world of theatre. What is the best part about getting to work with everyone under one roof? The beauty of creating something that is your own is that you get to make the decisions. I've been doing this for a very long time and I knew I wanted to surround myself with talented, kind and generous people and I hit the jackpot on that. As far as working with my off-Broadway cast, they are also my family, so it was always a given that I would blend the "families." Anthony Wilkinson who plays "Anthony DiGiacomo" is the playwright of the Big Gay Italian franchise and my real life "Angelica's" Anthony, so upon the first inception of the idea, he was always going to be a main character because I wanted to showcase that friendship.

Sonia Blangiardo, Michael Lowry, and Alicia Minshew5. Alicia's character, "Angelica," is loosely based upon you. What qualities did you see in Alicia that made you go, she would be a great "Angelica"? I did not know Alicia when I was creating the character of "Angelica" for over a year. For whatever reason, the more I flushed out the story, the more I kept seeing her in my head. When I finally met her to ask her to be a part of Tainted Dreams, it all clicked and I understood why. We clicked. Alicia is strong, yet sweet. She can be vulnerable without ever compromising on integrity. It was one of those things that can't really be explained. I just knew she was "Angelica."

6. I love how the show weaves between the fictitious soap opera Painted Dreams and what's really happening on Tainted Dreams, it's a fine, fine line, sometimes being hard to tell where the fiction ends and reality begins. When has there been a time in your life when the lines between fiction and reality were blurred? I'm sure there are many more than I care to admit! I've always called Tainted Dreams the Grey's Anatomy that occurs in a soap studio instead of a hospital. Lines get blurred in life all the time, especially in the work environment. When you add that you are spending 60 plus hours a week with the same people, telling stories about power, sex and betrayal...it's kind of inevitable that you get caught up in that.

Kelly Ripa and Mark Consuelos as "Haley and Mateo" on "All My Children"7. Since I was such a big All My Children fan, what was one of your favorite story lines from your time working on the show and what was one story line that you were like, this is the most ridiculous thing I've ever seen, let's wrap it up"? Wow...there are so many. I think one of my favorites was the tornado one which left "Julia" blind. The "Noah/Julia" story line was real and gut-wrenching and just so memorable, another was "Brooke's" ectopic pregnancy. Julia and Michael poured their souls into that one and you just felt their pain. "Alec" sleeping with "Arlene" behind "Hayley's'" back...as you can see, the list goes on. I don't know about a story that I wanted to see wrapped up, but I do remember shooting on Valentine's Day at midnight, a very very pregnant Kelly Ripa getting raped. That disturbed me on so many levels!

8. You have worked with some of daytimes biggest hunks. If you could have been cast as their lover, who would you have wanted to been matched up with? In my 25 plus years, I have seen a multitude of gorgeous men and women. So much so that after a while, you almost become immune to it. What connects me to people in general is their kindness and generosity of spirit. Because of that, I am lucky to call many of the "hunks" I've worked with good friends because beyond the great looks, they are amazing people.

Sonia Blangiardo9. What has been the biggest event to happen in your life that could have been a soap opera storyline? I saw many things happen behind the scenes that quite honestly, without revealing names have made it into Tainted Dreams. Personally, I took a vacation to Miami with two of my AMC besties and one friend wanted to go to another club. It was 2am and I asked her if I could just run up to the room to change my ridiculously high heeled shoes. She wanted no part of that and tapped an arbitrary guy walking in front of her and asked him to pick me up and carry me to the club. He did and we ended up being together for six years.

10. On "Call Me Adam" I have a section called One Percent Better, where through my own fitness commitment, I try to encourage people to improve their own life by one percent every day. What is something in your life that you want to improve by one percent better every day? I want to learn the virtue of patience. Sometimes there are so many things going on in my head that I want to have the option of pressing an escape button for about 10 minutes and just think of nothing. I need answers yesterday and that is not always possible for sure.

Sonia BlangiardoMore on Sonia:

Sonia Blangiardo is a two-time Emmy winner with over 20 years of experience as a producer/director. Sonia is the Creator and Executive Producer of Tainted Dreams, NYC BRAND PRODUCTIONS’ first scripted drama. Sonia was the Supervising Producer of Prospect Park’s online production of All My Children. She has worked in television as a producer/director for ABC’s General Hospital, All My Children, and One Life to Live, as well as CBS’s As the World Turns. She directed the revival of the Off-Broadway hit My Big Gay Italian Wedding in New York City. Sonia, a member of the Directors Guild of America, also directed and produced Boys Just Wanna Have Fun and My Big Gay Italian Wedding (both as ANNDEE PRODUCTIONS), which was nominated for an Off-Broadway Alliance Award for Best Play Revival. In addition, Sonia directed and produced a SAG pilot script for You Don’t Know Jack with Three’s Company‘s Richard Kline and Mr. PEC-Tacular Arm and Chest Workout DVD with Big Brother‘s Jessie Godderz and soap star Austin Peck. Sonia is also the founder of CARLO’S GOAL, a non-for-profit organization for pancreatic cancer research.

Saturday
Jan072017

Call Answered: Donnell Turner: General Hospital

Donnell Turner, Photo Credit: Caroline WhiteFrom the moment I found out Rebecca Budig was on General Hospital, I knew I had to dive back into the world of soaps. What I didn't realize is that I would become a fan of her co-star Donnell Turner, who plays "Curtis Ashford." When I got a request to interview Donnell, I went to Port Charles! Upon arrival, I was introduced to a hot man with sexy eyes and a chiseled body, but by the time our interview was over, I found a humble man with a big heart, an infectious zest for life, and a desire to help/inspire others to overcome hardships.

Donnell may be in your night time dreams, but us Soap fans are lucky to have him in the Daytime as well! Donnell can be seen on General Hospital weekdays at 3pm on ABC.

For the latest news and happenings, be sure to follow Donnell on Instagram and Twitter!

Donnell Turner and Rebecca Budig on ABC's "General Hospital"1. Rebecca Budig is one of my favorite actresses, so we have to start off talking about her. What has been the best part working with Rebecca on General Hospital? What is one of the funniest things to happen during taping between the two of you? The best part of working with Rebecca is that she is a professional in every way. She is nurturing. I couldn’t have asked for a better actress to begin with at General Hospital than Rebecca.

Rebecca has great timing and an excellent sense of humor. On my first day of taping, Rebecca had a line that was directed to me. Now keep in mind I was initially supposed to be a grungy and dishelved character. Rebecca’s response was, "Really? Look at this man. I am not saying this line to a freaking model." The line was changed and "Curtis" became a little more hip.

Donnell Turner on ABC's "General Hospital"2. What made you want to get onto General Hospital? This is always a big question asked. I had been a fan of General Hospital when I was younger. In fact I wrote to the casting director, Mark Teschner long before I moved to LA. Before I was cast to play "Curtis Ashford," I auditioned for GH a couple of years earlier. And it was 2015 that I was offered a chance to originate the character that you now see.

3. What do you relate to most about your character, "Curtis"? What is one characteristic of "Curtis'" you are glad you don't have? The part of "Curtis" I relate most to is his heart for others. He has an unrelenting pursuit of the truth that I identify with as well. I would have to say that I am not as driven by money in the way that "Curtis" is.

4. If Donnell and "Curtis" were to meet in a bar. What advice would Donnell give to "Curtis"? I would pull him very close and say, "Look bro, don’t get romantically involved with your sister-in-law."

Donnell Turner, Photo Credit: Jim Warren5. Prior to joining GH, you were on Days of Our Lives and two episodes of The Young & The Restless. What is the best part about acting in the soap opera genre? What are the most challenging parts of it? I have had an opportunity to work on the soaps that you mention. I think for an actor you are always excited when you get the chance to work and do what you do. Soaps have traditionally been good for actors because one, there were a lot of them at one time, and they’ve given actors opportunities to grow and expand. Secondly, there is a mixture of seasoned professionals and newcomers that each brings something to the table.

What can be challenging early on is the amount of dialogue that you are given on a daily basis. After you’ve done it for a minute, you start to get it down and it becomes easier each time, ultimately building into your muscle memory.

6. With your sexy smile, irresistible eyes, and chiseled body, you must get a lot of attention from both men and women. How do you handle the craving for you? What do you like about it and what makes you uncomfortable? One of the most undeniable qualities about fans is their dedication to the people they love and admire. You can’t help but appreciate the attention. These are the people that watch our shows and comment on social media. I am very grateful to my die-hard fans. It does get sticky when you have an ultra-fan that takes it a step further by touching inappropriately or sending private messages that should be kept in ones private thoughts.

Donnell Turner, Photo Credit: Jim Warren7. In this world of acting, how do you stay grounded and when others have been lead down more trying roads? I think having a sense of who you are and what makes you tick is the very basis of staying grounded. Of course having a great group of family and friends that also know who you are helps to maintain normalcy in a world that is anything but normal. I’m an athlete. I stay healthy by keeping my body and mind focused on the things that are most important and will help me to continue doing what I do.

8. Like you, I'm very into fitness. I battle with eating healthy, but am dedicated to working out. On "Call Me Adam" I have a section called One Percent Better, where through my own fitness commitment, I try to encouragepeople to improve their own life by one percent every day. What is something in your life that you want to improve by one percent better every day? Any focus that helps to keep people on track is a good thing. Staying consistent is a challenge that we each face in our own way. With so much going on in terms of my schedule, I have to remain organized. That is the one percent for me.

Donnell Turner, Photo Credit: Jim Warren9. One thing that is very close to your heart is talking to youths at schools and motivating them for their future. Like Whitney Houston sings, "I believe the children are our future. Teach them well and let them lead the way." What is it about your story that made you want to inspire kids? Out of all the kids you have met, have any of them later contacted you with their success story or perhaps how you inspired them? What was the most heart-breaking story you have found out from the kids you've spoken to? As a kid, I was inspired by all of the professionals and motivators that I had the opportunity to listen to when I grew up. The idea that I get to do what I love for a living is an incredible gift. The fact that I also get to inspire others is a really big deal to me.

At Washington State I was speaking to group of youths at an event that was designed to reengage the young people and help them gain entry back into society. Since that time numerous students have contacted me through social media and have told me about the things they are doing because they were inspired by me. On the flip side, I have also seen either on social media, or have heard other students have succumbed to drugs and stints in jail.That is heartbreaking.

10. What are 8 things people don't know about Donnell Turner? I think everything that I want people to know is already out there. But to give you something that may be different, I would say that people might not know:

1. I played semi-professional basketball.

2. I have modeled around the world.

3. Last year’s Daytime Emmy Awards was my first award ceremony where I was asked to present.

4. I’m a Martial Artist.

5. I keep hand sanitizer on me at all times.

6. I am an ambassador for the No More organization that raises awareness against domestic violence.

7. A couple of my favorite clothing brands are Lululemon and Allsaints.

8. I am right handed but can only snap on my left hand.

Donnell Turner, Photo Credit: Caroline WhiteMore on Donnell:

Donnell Turner was born on January 8th in Tacoma, WA. When he was a baby his family relocated to Chicago. The love for acting was born as a child when Donnell participated in church plays. In high school he played basketball and played trumpet in the band. The talented athlete briefly played semi-pro basketball as a shooting guard before changing his focus to pursue acting full-time. After relocating to Los Angeles in 2001, Donnell has booked more than 100 print ads worldwide including: Nike, Pepsi, Hilton, Disney, AT&T, Coke, and Infinity. In addition to these major brands, he has also worked in nine national commercial campaigns in the United States, Europe, and South Africa. Donnell was the 2014 Mercedes Benz C-Class Spokesman. Donnell has modeled ALL over the U.S. and internationally including: Hong Kong, Thailand, France, Italy, Amsterdam, Belgium, and Spain. The actor has noted that one of his favorite places in the world is Florence, Italy. He trained with Northern California Casting, Van Marr Academy, Beverly Hills Playhouse, and Lesley Kahn Acting Studios.

In 2014 and 2015 Donnell was the lead in two important plays in Los Angeles including the classic, The Black Doctor (Ira Aldridge circa 1759) at the Legendary Matrix Theater, and, the modern Crescent City Ghosts (a tribute to the 10 year anniversary of hurricane Katrina).

Some of his television credits include: How To Get Away With Murder, Dexter, Anger Management, Rizzoli and Isles, 2 Broke Girls, Revenge, The Mindy Project, Teen Wolf, CSI, 90210, and Parks and Recreation. The versatile actor is not a stranger to daytime drama. He portrayed the character of "Dr. Aiden Williams" opposite to Kristian Alfonso on Days of Our Lives for five episodes between 2009 and 2010. He also briefly portrayed a doctor on The Young and the Restless in 2015 for two episodes. Donnell's perseverance and tenacity paid off. He grew up watching General Hospital and began writing to casting director Mark Teschner in the 1990's. He auditioned for the role of the District Attorney in 2014. However ABC had other plans for this hidden gem, and later offered a 4-year contract to bring life to the original character created specifically for him as "Curtis Ashford" on General Hospital. Since November 30th, 2015 he has been gracing our screens with his good looks, talent, skill, and charisma portraying this unpredictable anti-villain.

He has given motivational speeches empowering and encouraging others across the country at high schools, colleges, religious organizations, and professional business events. On April 2, 2016 (Global Autism Awareness Day), Donnell was an honored guest speaker at the Autism Speaks Walk Now event.

Fitness is an integral part of Donnell Turner's life. Aside from a regular workout routine that includes hiking and kickboxing, which he has been practicing for 30 years. He has Firearms (9 mm) training, Knife Combat, Nun Chuckas, Submission Wrestling, Tae Kwon Do, Tang So Do, Muay Thai and Yoga. He is very proud to have studied and practiced Muay Thai in Bangkok, Thailand.

Sunday
Nov202016

Call Answered: Facetime Interview with Peter Engel, Executive Producer of "Saved By The Bell"

Call Me Adam and Peter Engel"Call Me Adam" gets Saved By The Bell with executive producer Peter Engel, as we discuss his new memoir I Was Saved By The Bell, sing the Saved By The Bell theme song, compare favorite episodes, & get some behind-the-scene stories from the hit show. We also discuss Last Comic Standing & find out what Peter's California Dreams are today! My 12-year-old self couldn't believe I entered the world of "Bayside High," while my adult self was so honored to interview the man behind The Bell!

For more on Peter follow him on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram!

Call Me Adam's interview with Peter Engel, Executive Producer of Saved By The Bell: