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Sharon Case (Sharon, Y&R) offers insight into her alter ego

What do you like most about playing your character? “I like how complex she is. She started as a simple high school girl, but of course her background wasn’t simple. She had two babies and she was taking care of her [paraplegic] mom. Sharon has gone through such an interesting and long story arc, beginning with a marriage to Nick, and how that’s transformed into a mature, really wonderful partnership and friendship, which exes can become over time. I have loved the growth with Sharon and Nick over the years. And I’ve also loved all of the ups and downs that she’s been through and overcome like mental illness and cancer. I think it’s a great aspect of her that she’s bipolar. She was wild and feisty and crazy, but I was glad that she recovered thanks to medication. I think at the core, she is strong and resilient, but you never know when her life might turn upside down again.”

Do you find it amazing that Sharon isn’t biologically attached to any main characters, yet she has consistently been on the front burner? “I’ve always said that same thing, that she’s this island, so it’s amazing that she’s also managed to get involved in everybody else’s lives. I think that not being technically related to a core family has worked for her because she can be moved into any story. But I’ve appreciated how the writers have always found ways to use Sharon, and maybe one day she’ll meet her father and find out that she has siblings. There are a lot of great storylines to come.”

What have been storyline highlights for you? “Definitely Sharon and Nikki in the sewer looking for Cameron’s body because Sharon thought she’d killed him. Working with Melody Thomas Scott [Nikki] is always super-fun, but I loved that part of the story. Of course, there was when Cassie died, which went on for a very long time because her death brought amazing ramifications. More recently, the J.T. storyline, when [Victoria, Nikki, Phyllis and Sharon] thought he was dead. I think it was one of the most interesting stories that we told and I loved that it involved many of these core women. It was really fun to play because I got to work with these wonderful ladies. So, those are my three all-time favorites.”

What is something that you and your character have in common? “I think perseverance and staying optimistic about life. We have both learned, grown and changed from our challenges.”

What personality traits have you infused into Sharon to make her your own? “My sense of humor, so that she can be light and funny sometimes.”

What’s an example of Sharon bringing the funny? “When Sharon married Tucker [in 2012]. That was Y&R’s 10,000th episode and it was so kooky and fun and funny. Joshua Morrow [Nick] has said that it was the funniest episode that we ever shot, and I agree with him.”

Do you like that your character is taking a break from men after Rey’s death? “Yes, because that’s necessary. To not do that would’ve said something else about who Sharon is. It’s the mature time of her life, so losing your partner or husband is something that just hits home with a lot of people. The last thing Sharon would want to do right now is get out and start dating again, so it was absolutely necessary for her to take a break and focus on herself and her kids.”

Sharon adores all of her children, but which one does she feel a special bond with? “Mariah, for sure. They’ve been through so much together, even though they found each other at a later time in their lives. They got to know each other and Sharon was there to help Mariah find her true identity and overcome what she had been through in the past. Since then, they’ve become what mothers and daughters tend to become over the years: best friends and peers. Noah keeps moving away for periods of time, so we don’t always see him and Sharon having a close relationship, and Faith has been a little girl for a long time and now she’s finally grown up, but out of the house.”

Do you like that your character owns her own business? “Yes, I do. In fact, I love it. She has found something that she can do quite well. She not only owns the coffeehouse but she runs it and it takes a lot to do something like this. I love that this makes Sharon business-savvy, whereas when, once upon a time, Sharon and Nick owned it together, you never saw Sharon as a businesswoman. It was more like a sweetheart thing that Sharon and Nick did together, but I think it’s cute that she has circled back to that and now runs it on her own. And it must be doing well because everyone in Genoa City comes in.”

Who is the one who got away? “I would have to say Nick. They met as childhood sweethearts, they had a wonderful 10-year marriage without interruption and beautiful children, but that blew up and evaporated even though their dream was to be that perfect couple and married forever. That ultimately didn’t work out and they got away from each other. I love the progression of their relationship, but what I think got away was the dream more than the man.”

Who would you like your character to say sorry to or resolve an unsettled matter with? “Victor. Sharon didn’t have a father, and she really looked up to Victor and learned a lot from him. She felt safe because he was there and that helped her to become the person she is because those were her formative years. Obviously, a lot of drama between them ensued after that. Sharon married Tucker because she was covering up that Victor was alive, because she was playing that he was dead, so she could take over Newman Enterprises with Tucker’s help. Since Victor was alive, that meant Sharon was still married to him. It was odd that he and Sharon never resolved what was between them and then she burned the ranch down. I think Sharon would want to say sorry for that. Things between them were really contentious but not so much in recent years. They’ve had some nice moments together where it seems that they may have patched things up, or they’ve grown beyond that. But they have never had a scene where she gave him a heartfelt apology.”

How would you describe your character’s evolution from the teenager we met in 1994? “Well, she started with not a lot going for her and her mom. She had a lot of struggles to overcome and she certainly did. She’s grown into a strong, smart and capable woman. She has wonderful children, her own business and a great friendship with her ex-husband. She has been through so many crazy ups and downs, and not just mental illness, but physical illness as well. I mean, she’s grown from all of these things into a really confident person.”

What keeps your character grounded? “Her kids and Nick. Even though Sharon and Nick didn’t end up having a perfect marriage, they do have a perfect relationship and I think that’s something that has helped her grow and realize a lot about life. And I think her children and Nick make her feel grounded and comforted.”

What character from Sharon’s past would you like to see come back to Genoa City? “I would love if Cameron Kirsten came back. He was a great addition to the show. He was that really smart, wealthy good-looking businessman, who was sort of a Victor Newman. I think he and Sharon still have some unfinished business.”

When would you say was the happiest time in Sharon’s life? “When Sharon and Nick found out that their baby, Faith, was still alive and being raised by Ashley. That was truly a very joyous time for Sharon.”

How would you sum up Sharon’s current relationship with Nikki? “They’ve always had a love/hate relationship but when Sharon was sick with cancer, she and Nikki had a lot of great talks. I remember one conversation where Nikki admitted that Sharon was her favorite versus Phyllis. For now, they haven’t had any reason to mingle, so they’re getting along, but I would love it if they mixed it up again.”

Who would be the perfect companion for Sharon to take on a road trip? “Phyllis, believe it or not. They probably wouldn’t get along at first but it would be fun to watch them get through some challenges together and eventually bond. And you know it would never be a dull moment with Phyllis.”

If Mariah and Tessa successfully adopt, are you looking forward to the role of devoted granny? “I’m not sure if I’m ready for that. I mean, Sharon has been a mom for so long and she does enjoy that, but for me, I don’t know if I’m ready to be called grandma. But I think that it’s still a terrific storyline and I enjoy being part of it.”

Me vs Her

Who has the better wardrobe? “Sharon. I can’t compete with her. I like fashion, but I’m more casual than she is. She has a job that she dresses up for in really cute clothes every day.”

Who has a better sense of humor? “I do and I try to help Sharon out with that.”

Who has the better house? “Gosh, that’s a tough one. I would almost say we’re equal on that, but Sharon has this beautiful cottage, which I think is adorable. It’s on the sprawling estate of the Newman ranch with gorgeous stables and horses, and I don’t have any of that.”

Who gives the best advice? “I think I give great advice, but if you take into account that Sharon went to school to become a therapist, you can’t deny that she’s a trained professional.”

Who is luckier in love? “We have both had a lot of love in our lives, so I would have to say that’s a draw.”

Who’s the better planner? “I love to travel, so I would be better at making travel plans. Sharon being a mother, I’m sure she’s had to put together Christmas and birthdays and family dinners and various parties, so she’s much better at doing that.”

Who has more patience? “Sharon. She’s a mother so she has to express a lot of patience.”

Who cries the easiest? “I guess that would be Sharon. Although I’m the one producing the tears, I remember there was a time when she cried for three straight years. Thankfully, I have not cried that often in my own life.”