In Part Three of my interview with Lynn Herring, the actress discusses her latest role as Audrey on AS THE WORLD TURNS, reflects on changes behind the scenes at daytime, and explains how she came to ring the NYSE bell.
We Love Soaps: You're currently in New York and getting to portray Audrey on AS THE WORLD TURNS. What is your take on the character?
Lynn Herring: She’s way over the top. She’s definitely a grifter and out for herself. In some ways it’s close to Lucy [her character on GH] at the beginning. Audrey is older obviously, and a lot more seasoned and been around the block many more times and had to survive. She’s interesting because at some point she’s more of a sociopath. I don’t think she’s really capable of deep feelings for other people. I think toward the end of this Henry has grown on her. But she did abandon her family and that to me is a tricky character to play. She’s only likable to a point, so giving her some zaniness helps. But she’s a really self-serving woman.
We Love Soaps: And she sounds very different from Lucy. I don’t think Lucy was ever malicious.
Lynn Herring: No, and that’s exactly the difference. I think Lucy would do anything to survive but not at the cost of other people. Maybe initially when she started, but she grew. Audrey is already grown up and she has done a lot of hurt.
We Love Soaps: Are you going to have scenes with Jon Linstrom (Craig on ATWT, who played Kevin on GH and PC)?
Lynn Herring: They actually did give us a couple of scenes which were so much fun. We really had a good time. He’s doing a super job as Craig, and he and Rosanna have a big story line. But they did give us a couple of days where we kind of get to wink at the audience and that was so much fun!
We Love Soaps: What do you see as some of the changes on daytime from when you first started?
Lynn Herring: Oh huge changes. It’s not any discredit, people are trying so hard to keep the stories interesting. The acting hasn’t changed. In fact, I think it’s had to get better because we’re working on a bare-bones budget. We have no set changes now. So when you see the sets, and wish they would change, they can’t. At GH we used to change the sets every night, the crew would be there all night, and we would have the opportunity to use the art department much more. There were huge dollars spent on just the backgrounds. None of that is available anymore. Some of the equipment, even the monitors up on booms, everything has been cut down to the bare bones. So when you see a quality show, it’s amazing it gets out there every day. All the perks for the cast and crew are gone. You’re seeing the best they can do with what they have.
So it’s hard. For example, watching [Lucy’s GH] scenes on YouTube, I forgot how lavish some of the things we did on a per day basis were. And the costumes we could afford. There’s none of that now. There’s less people in scenes. We used to do big party scenes once a week. Now you can’t afford to that with the extras. So I’m in awe of the amazing stories that get told with what we have left.
We Love Soaps: Do you get any rehearsal time on AS THE WORLD TURNS?
Lynn Herring: No, I’m sure you’ve heard that. There is none. You go in for a dry block which is often in the mornings where you lay out where you’re going to move. At that point you can ask for a line change or something you need. But even that is about 45 minutes and you run through the whole show. And then you get out there and while you’re walking through it the director is talking to cameras, and then you go right to tape. So you have to be up to speed when you get there in the morning. I loved the days of Gloria Monty where you would go in and spend hours just talking about, “What do you think? Do you want to do this...?” Then you would run through it, and actually meet with her again and go over what she liked and didn’t like. It was a whole day process. Now you literally have to synthesize your character, and your move, and the lighting, and everything in about five minutes.
We Love Soaps: That sounds hard.
Lynn Herring: But that’s why people need to see how good these actors are. These guys are doing it with no rehearsal. So when you see this work, I’m amazed at what they can put out. They are a great group out there.
We Love Soaps: Would you stay longer at AS THE WORLD TURNS if it was offered to you down the road?
Lynn Herring: Well, you know, she comes to an end. She doesn’t die or anything. But it was six weeks, then it turned into the whole summer, and this part of that story is done. There’s a very complete story in it. If they asked me to come back for another run? Yes, oh yes, I love these people, I’ve had a great time. But that said, it’s really hard to have a big life out west. I’ve been flying, and I’ve gotten to know lots of flight attendants. We’ve had lots of thunderstorm delays. I’ve learned so much about flying. My sisters were flight attendants, and I appreciate them so much more now. [laughs] But I really would like to work on the West Coast.
We Love Soaps: On June 25th this year, you opened the New York Stock Exchange when you rang the bell! How did that come about?
Lynn Herring: Oh my gosh, wasn’t that incredible? Cynthia Snyder is a woman who does publicity and she has always had a lot of film clients and she is one of the nicest people. So every where she goes she accumulates friends and clients. So she called when I first went to New York and said, “Okay there’s this great group of people at the Stock Exchange who when they need somebody they’ll call me to have one of my clients ring the bell.” And I thought, “no way, I always see groups of something.” And she said, “Well I’m going to let them know that you’re working in New York so if they ever need somebody just to holler.” They called almost the next week and I was working and there was no way to flip Audrey’s scenes around. So I said, “Oh that’s it, that’s my opportunity, it’s so sad.” Then a couple of weeks later she said, “Lynn, I think the Mayor was supposed to do it, he’s going to do it the next day, do you want to go down?” So I got to go and it was one of the most fun, entertaining, and educational things I’ve ever done. It was awesome.
We Love Soaps: It was! I don’t ever remember seeing a daytime soap actor up there before.
Lynn Herring: And you know what was nice is they were so excited. Some of the traders printed out Lucy pictures from the internet, because the Audrey part hadn’t aired. So here they are making trades and in one hand with their papers and in the other hand these internet printouts. And I’m signing autographs on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange! It was such a fulfilling day.
- The Lynn Herring Interview, Part One
- The Lynn Herring Interview, Part Two
Damon L. Jacobs is a Marriage Family Therapist practicing in New York City, and the author of "Absolutely Should-less: The Secret to Living the Stress-Free Life You Deserve." He blogs regularly at www.shouldless.com.