They don't come much classier than Susan Lucci. She is truly as gracious and delightful as they come. But until now we haven't known much about the Daytime Emmy winner's personal life. With the upcoming release of her memoir, "All My Life," the charitable daytime and Broadway vet opens up about life in Pine Valley, the tragedies and celebration.
What are you most looking forward to with the book's debut?
It's been a labor of love. I'm looking forward to hearing the response. I've kept my private life to myself, yet I know there are things in my life that people will identify with, so I'm anxious to hear.
You and your husband, Helmut Huber, have an amazing relationship. But in the book, you also gush over your co-star Walt Willey and his gorgeous blue eyes, tall physique, charming demeanor, et cetera. How is Helmut going to react to this?
[laughs] Well, Helmut is also tall, but with green eyes! You know, I can appreciate Walt. I love Helmut. Chemistry is chemistry, but that's not all there is to love. [laughs]
Has Helmut ever wanted to appear on "All My Children?"
Helmut actually did ... it's so funny ... [the producers] asked him since Helmut is Austrian with a [heavy] accent. They had a storyline where they needed someone to play a Nazi in a character's dream. Our dressing rooms were not near each other, and I did not know what his costume was going to be like. I come out of my dressing room and Helmut was coming down the hallway, but I didn't recognize him. I just saw this very tall man in boots and a Nazi uniform and he looked really imposing and scary. I just thought, 'I don't know this guy, I'm not looking at him,' but when I walked by, he says [Susan uses an Austrian accent], 'You don't even say hello anymore?' [laughs]. I mean, I did not recognize him! However, because of a [breaking news story] that day, his episode never aired!
You'll be in Chicago in a few days. What do you love most about the city?
I'm going to say it in the most respectful and adoring way ... almost every New Yorker that I know that goes to Chicago always says they get a similar vibe ... it's a sister city ... from the architecture to the theater, and just the electricity.
Finally, when people finish reading All My Life, what do you hope they come away with?
I hope they feel good and have been entertained. There are some very public things in my professional life that people already knew about, but [so many] they didn't or couldn't know about ... I hope they feel they've been let in.
Downtown Chicago Appearance: Union League of Chicago, 65 W. Jackson Blvd.; 847-446-8880; April 1; $60
Naperville Apperance: Anderson's Bookshop at Wentz Concert Hall, North Central College, 171 E. Chicago Ave., Naperville; 630-355-2665; $28