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#TBT Dominic Zamprogna

GENERAL HOSPITAL - Dominic Zamprogna portrays Dominic Pirellli on ABC Daytime's "General Hospital" which airs Monday-Friday (3:00 -4:00 p.m.,ET) on the ABC Television Network. (ABC/Craig Sjodin) DOMINIC ZAMPROGNA Credit: ABC

It was nearly six months to the day of his daytime debut when Digest caught up with Dominic Zamprogna (Dominic/Dante) for his first feature interview. “I feel good,” he declares. “A buddy of mine was on a soap years ago and he said it’s like you’re on SURVIVOR because you never know when you’re going to be voted off the island [laughs].” The buddy, by the way? Joe Lando (ex-Macauley, GL; ex-Jake, OLTL).

It’s been a long and winding road for Zamprogna on his journey from Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, to Port Chuck The scion of two dance instructors, Zamprogna was born with theater and dance in his blood.” My parents run two dance schools to this day,” he smiles. ”They met [in 1972] doing an Engelbert Humperdinck TV special in the U.K., where my mom was born and raised. They came back and my dad carried on the stage thing by directing and doing choreography for our professional theater company in Hamilton. That’s how us kids got into it. I wouldn’t say I’m quite a dancer [laughs]. I took ballet, tap and jazz for as long as they made me. I dropped ballet as soon as I possibly could and carried on with tap until I was about 13 and jazz until I was 15 or 16. I can move, I can follow steps and I have rhythm, but that’s about it.”

Following in big sister Gema’s footsteps, Zamprogna gave show biz a shot and landed his first acting gig at age 11. He worked continuously, racking up an impressive resume of television credits in the Great White North and a decade later, in 2001, he found himself as the lead in the teen drama EDGEMONT. “When we were doing it, DAWSON’S CREEK was a huge hit and we were thinking of ourselves as a lower budget, Canadian version of that,” he quips. “It was a fun show. It gave me a lot of experience. But you know how you wish you could go back and redo some things? That might be one of them. I wish I had a little more maturity and a little more understanding of what it’s like to be No. 1 on a call sheet, but I was 19 years old and the lead on a series, and you don’t realize what you have sometimes.”

One thing Zamprogna did take away from the series was an eight-year relationship with makeup artist Linda Leslie whom he made his wife last November 1. The couple had been planning to wed in front of family and friends, but with Zamprogna’s suddenly busy work schedule and the expense of having everyone travel to the States, the couple took matters into their own hands. ”It was me, Linda, my friend who took pictures and the justice of the peace,” he says. “We married at the Griffith Park Observatory [atop the Hollywood Hills] at 11 a.m. on a Sunday. It was beautiful. Maybe we’ll have some kind of party or reception in the future, I don’t know. But everyone’s been pretty happy so far and we’ve had no family backlash as of yet.” As for the obvious nosy question about if and when they’ll start a family, Zamprogna acknowledges, “We’ve definitely stopped trying not to [laughs]. Yeah, it’s definitely in the plans.”

What the new year holds for the newlyweds has yet to be seen, but Zamprogna is thankful for everything he has in his life. “If you’d told me at the beginning of2009 where I’d be at the end of2009, I wouldn’t have believed you,” he marvels. “We were living in Vancouver. I was doing guest spots on SMALLVILLE and other series that film up there. I was pretty happy and I didn’t think I could get happier that fast! These kinds of things don’t usually happen in rapid succession, where you’re doing well and people are digging you and you’re digging the job and making all these new friends. I’m really enjoying L.A. I love this job. It’s one of the most fun things I’ve ever done, but man, six months went by in the blink of an eye. That, to me; is a true testament of enjoying what you’re doing. This may sound cheeseball, but right now, everything is perfect.”

The N Word

Zamprogna makes no bones about one particular rite of passage for an actor: the nude scene, which he tackled during his recurring stint on the racy Showtime drama THE L WORD in 2008:

“I didn’t wear a lot of clothes there,” he chuckles. “We were shooting a scene where, within the show, we were shooting a sex scene on a movie set. It was the first time I had to wear ‘the sock,’ as they call it. And then, jumping into a pool bare-assed with five semi·nude women, three cameras on you and a camera crew all around? That’s a nerve-wracking experience, let me tell you. My agent called me the day after I booked it and said, ‘So, how do you feel about nudity?’ And I’m like, ‘Nudity on a show about lesbians? Why would I need to be nude?’ But I’ll never forget it. We finished the scene, they called cut and all the wardrobe women were walking around with robes draping them over the girls, who were wearing jeans and bras, and I’m standing there holding my privates in my hands saying, ‘Um, where’s my towel? Where’s my robe? A bib, maybe [laughs]?’ That which does not kill you makes you stronger, and that was definitely one of those days.”

Did You Know?

  • In 2001, he appeared in the TV movie DYING TO DANCE, starring his future GH co-star Kimberly McCullough (ex-Robin) and GH alum Rick Springfield (ex-Noah/Eli).
  • Other than GH, Zamprogna is most recognized for his role as “Jammer” on BATTLESTAR GALACTICA. “Before that, people would just think they went to high school with me [laughs].

 Just The Facts

Birthday: April 21

Hometown: Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

Ethnic Heritage: His father is Italian; his mother is British.

All In The Family: Has two sisters, Gema and twin Amanda, who both also acted in Canada. “Gema runs her own Pilates studio and does voice work occasionally; Amanda does massage therapy. They both have families now,” he shares.

His Take On Dominic: “He’s actually a noble guy and does want to solve Claudia’s murder because he legitimately think that she deserves to be treated like anyone else who was killed in cold blood. Justice should be served.”