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Life Goes On

Soap Opera Digest: So that was some sad stuff you had to play, huh?

Terri Ivens: Oh, my goodness, so sad. Ethan's death ... I mean, I can't imagine how Simone is going to come out of this. I am really curious to see what the writing will lend itself to over the next month or so after she's had time to grieve. The girl's got a lot to grieve!Digest: How was taping the funeral?

Ivens: I have to say, it was done beautifully, I think. Tonya Pinkins [Livia] sang a cappella and it was gorgeous. It didn't take much acting skill on my part to fall apart with Tonya singing. Her voice is so affecting, I think it will really move the fans. Terri the actress is very interested in knowing how the fans are going to react to all of this — and to how it all looks on-screen, too. I've had experiences before where I put everything on the line, tear my heart out and give it to the performance, and then I look at the way it was edited and think, "Really, that's what you did with it? I bled for you and that's what you came up with? Why did I work so hard, then?" Real tears, I mean, when you're acting and there are tears running down your face, that comes from real pain. Fake tears, when you're just scrunching up your face or burying your face in your hands, that's different [laughs]. But on a very positive note, I have to say that they got the casket right — it seemed long enough for Stretch [James Scott, Ethan] to be inside there.Digest: Will we see Ethan and Simone together in any post-death fantasy sequences?

Ivens: I haven't taped any, so I don't think so, no. I would love, though, if there was a scene where she woke up one morning and he was there in bed and it's like it never happened, like a DALLAS moment, and then an alarm goes off and she realizes that he's not there. That kind of thing would be really effective, I think. But I'm full of great ideas like that [laughs]! That's why I will be a producer later in my career: I've got a lot of romantic ideas. Our show, right now, I mean, on Valentine's Day, everybody was beat up and bleeding! Though I applaud it, because I think life-or-death is much more interesting than watching someone opening up a Valentine's Day card.Digest: This is totally off-topic, but before the ball exploded, I had such a laugh at the scene where Simone was hounding Dixie to take her mask off.

Ivens: When she was like, "What, are you ugly?" Wasn't that great? She totally had the beat — she just looked at me like, "You've got to be kidding me." We had to do that over and over because they were trying to fit Tad in in the background without it being too contrived, so we probably did those silly little scenes, like, no joke, six or seven times. I was like, "Wow, this has stopped being funny to me six or seven times in!" I thought it would have been great if I'd just ruined everything by ad-libbing Simone really recognizing Dixie: "Oh, my God, I know who you are! I've seen your picture!"Digest: I've slept with your man!

Ivens: Totally! But that was super-fun because Cady was the first friend I ever made on the show; right before she left was when I came on.Digest: So, do you have a sense yet of what life after Ethan will look like for Simone?

Ivens: Not really, no. Anything could happen. I feel like anything could happen. I see Simone like Madonna — someone who has the chance to totally reinvent herself. And if you look back at Simone's history in Pine Valley, she's reinvented herself a few times! So, for me as an actor, I just try to find a niche that's fun for me to play, so no matter what they're having her do, I'm having a good time. And hopefully, it'll be something they're inspired by. Let's face it: It's pretty much a miracle that Simone's lasted five years in daytime without a family or a major love [interest]. That does not support your daytime longevity! But I look forward to whatever challenge is to come. I think all the fans should send Megan [McTavish, head writer] bottles of Veuve Clicquot [champagne] — Veuve means widow in French, you know, so I think every fan should send in a bottle so that she keeps Simone in mind!


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