Jordi Vilasuso Joining 'The Young and the Restless' as Rey

Daytime Emmy winner Jordi Vilasuso has joined the cast of The Young and the Restless as Rey, according to Soap Opera Digest.

Rey is a mysterious stranger named Rey who quickly finds himself immersed in the drama of Genoa City.

Vilasuso has played roles on other soap operas including Dario Hernandez or Days of our Lives, Dr. Griffin Castillo on All My Children, and Tony Santos on Guiding Light. His work on Guiding Light earned the actor a Daytime Emmy Award in 2003 as Outstanding Younger Actor in a Drama Series.

Vilasuso is scheduled to make his Y&R debut on Friday, August 17.

Today in Soap Opera History (July 19)

1966: Dark Shadows' Roger crashed due to a missing bleeder valve.
1985: John Aniston debuted as Victor on Days of our Lives.
1990: General Hospital's Wendy was murdered.
2010: Scott Clifton debuted as Liam on Bold and the Beautiful.
"All true histories contain instruction; though, in some, the treasure may be hard to find, and when found, so trivial in quantity that the dry, shrivelled kernel scarcely compensates for the trouble of cracking the nut."
― Anne Brontë in "Agnes Grey"

"Today in Soap Opera History" is a collection of the most memorable, interesting and influential events in the history of scripted, serialized programs. From birthdays and anniversaries to scandals and controversies, every day this column celebrates the soap opera in American culture.

On this date in...

1940: The first episode of radio soap opera The Carters of Elm Street, written by Mona Kent, aired on the Mutual Network.

Helen Gallagher: A Look Back at Her Storied Career, Including 'Ryan's Hope'

Tony Award and Emmy Award-winning Ryan's Hope legend Helen Gallagher is celebrating her 92nd birthday today.

Born in Brooklyn, Gallagher was raised in Scarsdale, New York for several years until the Wall Street crash which heralded the Great Depression, and her family moved to the Bronx. Her parents separated and she was raised with an aunt. She suffered from asthma.

Gallagher was known for decades as a Broadway performer. She appeared in "Make a Wish," "Hazel Flagg," "Portofino," "High Button Shoes," "Sweet Charity" (earning a 1967 Tony Award nomination for Featured Actress in a Musical), and "Cry for Us All."

In 1952, she won a Tony Award for her work in the revival of "Pal Joey." In 1971, she won her second Tony Award for her role in the revival of the musical "No, No, Nanette," which also starred Ruby Keeler and Patsy Kelly. Her song and dance number with Bobby Van from that show, "You Can Dance with Any Girl", is preserved on the cast album of that revival. She would later take on the role of Sue Smith in the Papermill Playhouse revival of the show, playing the role Keeler played a quarter century earlier.

Her first starring role on Broadway came in 1953 as title character Hazel Flagg, based on the 1937 Carole Lombard movie Nothing Sacred.  Gallagher appeared in the 1977 movie Roseland opposite Christopher Walken. An aficionada of Rodgers and Hammerstein, she appeared on a special tribute to Richard Rodgers on The Bell Telephone Hour.

Despite her extensive work on Broadway, she is perhaps best known as the gentle Irish American matriarch Maeve Ryan on the soap opera Ryan's Hope, a role she played for the show's entire duration, from 1975 to 1989. She was nominated for five Daytime Emmy Awards for her work on the serial, winning in 1976, 1977, and 1988.  She would go on to appear on Another World, All My Children and One Life to Live.

Below are some clips from Gallagher's storied career, her iconic Ryan's Hope days, and an amazing interview and musical performance she did on The Mike Douglas Show in 1979.

Happy Birthday, Helen!

Today in Soap Opera History (July 18)

1986: A gang member terrorized Another World's Victoria.
1986: Guiding Light's Alan revealed himself to be alive.
1986: As the World Turns' Chris Hughes passed away.
1997: Days of our Lives' Kristen brought Roman to Marlena.
"All true histories contain instruction; though, in some, the treasure may be hard to find, and when found, so trivial in quantity that the dry, shrivelled kernel scarcely compensates for the trouble of cracking the nut."
― Anne Brontë in "Agnes Grey"

"Today in Soap Opera History" is a collection of the most memorable, interesting and influential events in the history of scripted, serialized programs. From birthdays and anniversaries to scandals and controversies, every day this column celebrates the soap opera in American culture.

On this date in...

1934: Actress Darlene Conley was born. Best known for her many years as Sally Sprectra on The Bold and the Beautiful, she also played evil Rose DeVille on The Young and the Restless in the late '70s (running a prostitution and baby selling business in a story involving Nikki) and again in the mid-'80s (when she stole Nina's baby, revealed years later to be Ronan). Conley also had roles on Days of our Lives, General Hospital and Capitol. She died January 14, 2007.

Today in Soap Opera History (July 17)

1981: Another World's Zachary confessed to murder.
1984: All My Children's Ross told Palmer about his father.
1989: Guiding Light's Josh and Reva tied the knot.
2003: OLTL's Natalie and Christian dreamed about getting married
"All true histories contain instruction; though, in some, the treasure may be hard to find, and when found, so trivial in quantity that the dry, shrivelled kernel scarcely compensates for the trouble of cracking the nut."
― Anne Brontë in "Agnes Grey"

"Today in Soap Opera History" is a collection of the most memorable, interesting and influential events in the history of scripted, serialized programs. From birthdays and anniversaries to scandals and controversies, every day this column celebrates the soap opera in American culture.

On this date in...

1939: CBS Radio soap opera Woman of Courage premiered. Selena Royle starred as Martha Jackson, whose small-town life allegedly proved that "if ye have faith, nothing shall be impossible." The series, written by Carl Buss, ran until July 10, 1942.

1946: On syndicated radio soap opera Hearts in Harmony, Steve Parker and his fiancee Penny took a drive through the countryside around Rossville just a few days before their wedding.  Meanwhile, Jed told Johnny the FBI may be investigating Parker Industries. Hearts in Harmony premiered in 1941, and was sponsored by the Kroger grocery store chain.

Vinessa Antoine Leaving 'General Hospital' for Historic Canadian Primetime Role, Jordan Will Be Recast

Vinessa Antoine, who joined the cast of General Hospital in 2014 as Jordan Ashford, is leaving the show as she prepares to take on the historic lead role in the upcoming Canadian drama Diggstown.

On Instagram, she wrote, "There are so many people that God put into place who are directly and indirectly responsible for my time at @generalhospitalabc You know who you are. I thank you. I came into this world as an artist. My job is to create and inspire. I hope that I did that a little in playing #JordanAshford. I believe that I have taken her as far as I can. To clarify, as negotiations for #Diggstown were underway, although I am open to stay and play in Port Charles, I was told by my reps that @GeneralHospital felt that my character would be off the canvas for too long for me to continue playing her. With that, we decided to mutually part ways. It’s time to make room for more women of color in prominent roles on television. I’m grateful to assist in that by starting this new chapter in my journey. I hope you’ll all come along. I feel blessed. Be well. xo"

ABC offered some additional inside to Soap Opera Digest: “Vinessa Antoine exercised her pilot out and is choosing to leave the show. While we are incredibly sad to see an actress of her caliber go, we feel that the character of Jordan Ashford is too important to lose and will be recasting the role.”

Antoine will make history as the first black Canadian actress to star in a prime time drama on legacy network television, according to public broadcaster CBC.

“I’m just very excited to be chosen to do this,” said the Toronto-born actress, when she announced the casting to the Toronto Star. “I think it’s something that’s been long overdue. But everything is changing right now and it’s definitely time.”

In Diggstown, scheduled to air in the key CBC fall and winter season, Antoine will play Marcie Diggs, a top corporate lawyer who decides to dedicate herself to a legal aid office in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia.