Beauty, Braun, and BrainsBy Mala Bhattacharjee Posted: Feb 24, 2005
Prior to her contract negotiations, GENERAL HOSPITAL's Tamara Braun (Carly) was all smiles and high energy during two solo fan events at the New York's Marriott Marquis Hotel in January.
After discussing everything from the writing for women on soaps to pictures of her feet for sale on eBay.com, Braun took a quick power nap and re-charged before her afternoon encounter with a (mostly) new crop of admirers.
"Oh, well, you've got to go to both events when you're traveling all the way from Baltimore," joked one fan with a group that attended both the morning and afternoon Q&A sessions.
Feeding off their energy, Braun fielded fan questions with finesse and allowed herself to get comfortable, folding her legs up on her chair and even sharing a few personal stories about her very German grandfather, her "Opa."
The actress told Weekly, "I always have a good time with the fans. I'm just so appreciative of the support and the love and the devotion. It still, four years later, really touches me and overwhelms me — in a good way. Unfortunately, I feel slightly out of it, but I'm trying to be as present as I can with whatever cold medicine I've got in me."
Braun proved to be very present as she spoke of her acting beginnings, her friendships with co-stars Alicia Leigh Willis (Courtney), Rick Hearst (Ric), and Cynthia Preston (ex-Faith), and her "futuristic showgirl" costume from GH's New Year's Eve episode. Her praise for young co-star Dylan Cash (Michael) included a candid tale about a bad day on set leading Cash to re-confirm his commitment to acting. While fans were engaged, it was clear that Cash's older male co-stars were where their interests truly lay.
Surrounded by vocal representatives from fans of the always controversial Carly and her ex-lover, Lorenzo Alcazar (Ted King), as well as more traditionalist supporters of Carly and her mobster ex-husband Sonny Corinthos (Maurice Benard), Braun gracefully danced around any attempts from fans to discover her stance on Carly's leading men.
"You don't get over that over night," she said of Carly's love for Sonny, but also allowed, "I can justify it. It was never closed," when asked about a Carly/Lorenzo reunion. Not to completely ignore the odd man out, goody-two-shoes Dr. Steven Lars Webber (Shaun Benson), Braun did admit that, "Alcazar over Steven is definitely more familiar, more like Sonny." Sorry, Doc, we guess your bedside manner needs a little work!
Perhaps hoping to sway her into revealing her preferences more clearly, a Philadelphia "CarLo" fan brought Braun soft pretzels in the shape of the diminutive couple name, while a table full of fans from all over the country made her a presentation after the event ended to remind Carly never to forget Sonny.
No matter what hunky antihero, if any, Carly ends up with, the actress stressed that Carly herself is her first priority. "I have no interest in playing a character that doesn't change," she said, making a statement that tied into the most popular question asked at both events: that of Braun's contract negotiations. Viewers were anxious to know, more than anything, if Carly Corinthos would be leaving Port Charles.
Appropriately enough, the $64,000 question was asked first at the first event and second at the second event. Braun's Mona Lisa smile revealed not even the slightest hint of her plans and she assured the crowd, "We're talking. If I re-sign, you know where to find me."