The Orlando Sentinel
Monday, March 12, 2001
Erika Slezak Celebrates 30 Years on `One Life to Live'
by Nancy Imperiale Wellons
Anyone who thinks they have
had a tough year should have ridden the roller coaster that was Victoria Lord's
First she had a scary battle with breast cancer.
Then she fell in love with a younger man and they had a fairytale wedding.
And then he was shot at the reception!
"It was like real life," says Erika Slezak (who plays Victoria on TV's One
Life To Live), "where you can have a moment of great happiness and a moment of
deep depression, and it can happen in the same five minutes. It was T.S. Eliot
who once said that in a minute there is time for decisions and revisions, which
a minute can reverse."
And just a few minutes with Slezak can reverse all sorts of notions:
... That nothing lasts in this world. Slezak, 54, celebrates 30 years
on "OLTL" this week. That's longer than her 23-year marriage to theater actor
... That soap divas ooze attitude. Though her character is regal
(Slezak is legendary for avoiding the use of contractions to retain that precise
air), the actress is motherly, telling us to take our time during an interview
and sharing intimate stories of her family.
... That daytime is for airheads. "People who don't work on soaps have
no idea how difficult it is. We do 40 pages of dialogue a day. When people come
here from California or the theater, even, they're in a panic. 'Oh, my God! How
do you do this? When do you rehearse?' You don't. You learn your lines and go
and do it."
...That only the career-obsessed can succeed. Despite winning five
Emmys, Slezak is proudest of her children --Michael, 21, a junior at Georgetown
business school, and Amanda, 19, a budding actress at New York University.
(c) 2001, The Orlando Sentinel (Fla.).