GLORIA LORING INTERVIEW CONDUCTED BY SOAP CITIES WRITER CHRISTINE CHAGARIS
This interview has been lightly edited and condensed for clarity.
Soap fans remember Gloria Loring as Liz Chandler on Days of Our Lives from 1981 to 1986. Soap Cities caught up with the talented singer/actress as she readies for the role of Millicent Miller in a production of Nice Work If You Can Get It. The 10-time Tony-nominated Broadway musical runs from April 6 through 22 at the Carpenter Performing Arts Center in Long Beach, California. Gloria Loring is also a successful author who is in the process of recording a new album. How does she feel about returning to Days? Would she ever do another soap?!
Read on for the “Gloria Loring Lowdown!”
Soap Cities: Tell us a bit about Nice Work If You Can Get It. What drew you to it, and what do you enjoy most about being onstage?
Gloria Loring: Well, imagine Marx Brothers meet George Gershwin (the play is set to Gershwin tunes). It’s madcap comedy, silly, funny, cackling kind of laughter. We spend half of our rehearsal time laughing hysterically at what other people are doing. It’s so much fun! I think the audience is going to be absolutely overjoyed with it. And then, of course, you have all of that madcap goings-on meets the elegant and beautiful music of the Gershwins. It’s just a wonderful combination. It’s funny, but Millicent isn’t a singing role. What I loved best about it is working with a company of people and getting to watch what they’re doing, learning from it. We have a company of over 20 people. All that talent onstage – great tap dancing, physical comedy, and wonderful singing.
SC: What do you enjoy more, acting or singing?
GL: Oh, singing. It’s my first love. I started at three years old. But you know, acting is a part of singing, the way you have to delve into emotions for both.
Days Dish with Gloria Loring
SC: Do you miss your role as Liz on Days of Our Lives? Would you ever go back if asked?
GL: I loved my time as Liz. I loved the fans, my co-stars, and the storylines. Joe Gallison (ex-Dr. Neal Curtis) is such a stellar actor. I learned so much from him. I think my time as Liz has long since passed because it’s been such a long time since she’s been on the show and she doesn’t have people there that she’d be in a relationship with. It’s not like she’s a part of the DiMera family or any of the other families. It would be a stretch, let’s put it that way. I did talk to some people involved with the show (about Liz returning), but it just hasn’t worked out, which is fine by me.
Why Gloria Loring Loved Doing Days
GL: When I got the show, it was also a very important time in my life. I joined when my son Brennan was about to start kindergarten and Robin (Thicke) was three. It meant that I got to stay home off the road, because I was traveling and singing in clubs, and doing television all over the place as a singer and I’d take the kids with me, so it was busy. So with the soap, I got to stay home more than I was away, do something I love and it was usually two or three days a week (filming), so it worked out perfectly.
SC: How was it to work with legends such as Macdonald Carey and Frances Reid (Tom and Alice Horton)?
GL: I rarely had scenes with them, but it was just wonderful to work with them when I did, and to know them. Just having them on the show they were sort of the anchors, being the matriarch and patriarch of the Horton Family. It was an honor to be on Days with them.
SC: Do you keep in touch with your former co-stars?
GL: I sometimes run into Bill and Susan Hayes (Doug and Julie Horton) at the opera. They’re big opera buffs and such a wonderful couple. I sometimes run into Jean Bruce Scott (ex-Jessica Blake Fallon; Nick Fallon’s mother) and Leann Hunley (Anna DiMera). I also keep in touch with Joe Gallison’s wife as well.
Friends and Lovers
SC: Do you look back fondly on your smash hit duet, Friends and Lovers with (the late) Carl Anderson? How did that come about?
GL: Carl was such a brilliant singer and a wonderful performer. It was an extraordinary time. I wanted so much to have a hit record, and I tell the story in my book, Coincidence is God’s Way of Remaining Anonymous. I told my (Days) Associate Producer, a dear friend, “I’m never going to have a hit record because everyone thinks of me as a soap actress instead of a singer.” Well, the next morning, she brought me a song (Friends and Lovers) that had been sent into the show, and before it finished playing I said that’s a hit if I’ve ever heard one. It took over a year for it to unfold, but it was an amazing journey!
What’s Next for Gloria Loring??
SC: Any new music on the horizon for you? You also have a very talented son (singer), Robin Thicke. Are you working on new music with him?
GL: I do have an album I’ve been working on. I have to get together with my producer when some time clears and finish the last two songs. Robin sings background on two of them, and I also wrote a song with him. The music’s mostly pop and easy listening. There’s also a great new Burt Bacharach song on it, among many.
SC: You have a full plate at the moment with your projects. Would you ever consider doing another soap?
GL: (Thoughtfully pauses) I don’t know; that’s a good question. That would be a big decision to make. It would depend on the role; the demands of it. It’s (soap acting) very intense and I’m not sure it interests me at this point in my life. I am taking my time with life. I now have five grandchildren, and I am enjoying being available to them. I am sort of doing little short things here and there that keep me close to home.
Soap Cities wishes Gloria the best of luck with Nice Work If You Can Get It, her upcoming album and future projects!
If soap fans are interested in seeing Gloria’s play you can purchase your tickets here!
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