TRACEY   BREGMAN

A True Class Act

Not only is The Young and the Restless’ Tracey Bregman beautiful, she truly is one classy lady. Sit back and enjoy as Tracy and I dish about her career, her Emmy nomination last year, the character of Lauren, and the movie role that keeps her laughing to this day.

By: Amanda


The waves were crashing, I could hear the sound of dogs barking in the background and that distinctive laugh filled the other end of the phone. Imagine my excitement at starting what would be an incredible interview with none other than Tracy Bregman, veteran cast member on the number one rated daytime drama …CBS’ The Young and the Restless

Off and on for nearly 2 decades, Tracey Bregman has delighted and entertained viewers with her delicious portrayal of savvy businesswoman and Genoa City fashion diva, Lauren Fenmore. 

In the beginning, viewers loved to hate Lauren….she was the bad girl and quintessential daytime diva….. the one leading lady who was not afraid to pull out all the stops to get a man, even if it meant getting on a stage and singing in front of a crowd as Lauren did back in the 80’s. “I loved the storyline where Lauren was singing,” says Bregman with a laugh. “However I don’t have the voice for it.”

So does that mean that Lauren won’t be serenading Michael or the residents of Genoa City at Neil’s jazz club anytime soon? “I don’t think the fans would enjoy that,” she says laughing. “Well maybe they would if they were tone deaf….in my fantasies the singing worked great…but in reality I was horrified.”

But viewers quickly had a change of heart as Lauren began her numerous off and on battles with devilish nurse, Sheila Carter originally played by Kimberlin Brown.

“Originally the character of Sheila was supposed to be nothing more than a recurring character, who was on the show for a few episodes,” reveals Bregman. However, the powers that be behind the scenes saw more. “The more cat fights that Lauren and Sheila had, the more Kimberlin and I both thought this is could be memorable,” says Bregman with a laugh. “Neither one of us knew it (the Lauren/Sheila feud) was going to go for this long.”

And then the feud was over…. “or is it”, hints Bregman and the character of Lauren was relegated to back burner status as the show decided what to do next with Lauren. After bouncing her around to see where she fit in various storylines and giving her numerous hunky love interests, Bregman left the place she called home for many years in order to pursue other opportunities. 

But daytime came a callin’ once again and Bregman brought back the character of Lauren……this time to Y&R’s sister show The Bold and the Beautiful.  “Lauren came to Los Angeles to visit her old friend Eric Forrester,” says Bregman. “Little did she know that she would end up with both Eric and Ridge Forrester as suitors.”

Bregman remembers her time on B&B fondly. “They are such a wonderful group over there,” she says. “I was fortunate enough to work with some great people and exciting characters.”  So would Bregman be up to bringing Lauren back for another brief visit like she did this past winter? “I would love to.”

Eventually, Bregman returned to her old stomping grounds and Lauren began to fight for her rightful place on the corporate ladder. Bregman excitedly waited to see what was in store for the character even though this time she did it without a contract. “It’s true…I don’t have a contract…I am recurring, but am very loyal to Y&R,” she says. “I want to be able to still do the show and yet explore other opportunities that may come along,” she continues.

But in the meantime, Bregman is enjoying being front and center once again. And boy has Bregman gotten the airtime over the last year or so, with all the storylines Lauren has been involved in. One storyline in particular surrounded the return last year of former onscreen nemesis Shelia Carter, once again played by fan favorite Kimberlin Brown. 

Never in the history of daytime has there been a feud as entertaining and long running as the one that Lauren has shared with Sheila. “We’ve actually had this feud going on for close to 16 years,” says Bregman, who was pregnant with her oldest son Austin at the time this storyline originated.

Of course, we all know that Shelia’s mission in life was to make Lauren’s life as miserable as possible and this time she did it by going after Lauren’s oldest son, Scott who debuted in the form of daytime newcomer Blair Redford. “I was glad to see the show bring Scott back and weave him into the storyline,” shares Bregman.

However, little Scotty became a victim of Soap Opera Rapid Aging Syndrome and grew to the hearty age of 24 years old, much to the chagrin of Bregman. “I enjoyed working with Blair and was glad that they aged Scott, but aging him to 24 was a little too much…I would’ve been okay if they had made the character 18,” she says.

She also shared a funny story about her initial filming with the man who was cast as her onscreen son. “A family member was in town visiting and had gone to the set with me the day Blair began filming,” she says. “When we first walked on the set, she pointed to Blair and asked me if he was Lauren’s new love interest and if that did not sum up my thoughts,” she says laughing

So does that mean that Lauren’s first born will be paying a visit to Genoa City in the future, especially now that she has a new son and is forming a relationship with him…..a relationship that was absent with Scotty? “I think it would be a great thing for the show to explore and to show Scott’s jealousy towards Lauren for being a mother to this new son,” she says. “They (the writers) could really delve into the character’s childhood and everything that happened with Sheila and why Lauren did what she did to keep him safe…I think it would be very cool if the show did indeed explore that.”

And no he was not Lauren’s new love interest as she had already won the heart of Genoa City attorney Michael Baldwin. Ever since Lauren and Michael first uttered the crazy 4 letter word, viewers have enjoyed this coupling. “Awww you know what, I have to agree with the fans on this one,” shares Bregman. “I absolutely love the pairing of Michael and Lauren and I love how they both were trying to win back their former loves Paul and Christine and ended up falling in love with one another.”And not only does Lauren adore Michael…Tracy has the same adoration for  Christian LeBlanc. “I just absolutely adore Christian,” she shares. “He is so entertaining and so much fun to work opposite with.”

But let’s not forget that Michael is not the only hunky leading male of Lauren’s that is still presently on the show. Her ex-lover Brad Carlton and former hubby, Paul Williams still play a role in Lauren’s life. “For being former spouses, Paul and Lauren are sure such great friends and confidantes for one another.”

With that being said, I asked Bergman if she thought that there might be any unfinished business between Lauren and Paul. “There is some unfinished business between the two of them and it will come out in quite a shocking way,” she shares. “The fans will just have to watch and see what happens.”

So if Michael and Lauren were ever to split does that mean Paul and Lauren could give it another whirl or would there be another Genoa City leading man Bergman would like to see Lauren paired with. “I like them all actually”, she says with a laugh. But when I mentioned one in particular her curiosity was peeked.

“Victor Newman might be interesting,” she says, clearly intrigued. In the meantime though, Bregman is content in sharing airtime with her current co-stars and one co-star that she thought she would never share airtime with again.

Little did Bregman know she would be in scenes once again with one of her co-stars from The Bold and the Beautiful, this time a few years later and on a completely different show. “When Adrienne (Frantz, Amber) first came to Y&R we were trying to remember the history our characters had with one another while we were on B&B with hopes of bringing that history up once again, but this time on Y&R.”

However Frantz’s storyline went in one direction, while Bregman was given another powerful, emotion provoking storyline….that of a mother who was battling the blues. “I honestly think it’s great that the show decided to go forward with the post partum depression storyline,” says Bregman. “Lauren had a lot going on with the nightmares, Sheila and all of that, but you know any storyline that is socially relevant such as this one was is nice to play.”  

She continues, “inevitably a storyline such as this one helps people and helps them (the audience) feel that they are not alone, if they have indeed gone through something similar and I always think a storyline like this is interesting to explore…we are not perfect beings and the most interesting character to play as an actor is a flawed character.”

It was the flaws of Lauren that earned Bregman a nod at last year’s daytime Emmy nominations and a nod at the pre-Emmy nominations this year. “It was such a shock to me, such a shock,” Bregman says excitedly. “It was such an honor to get the nomination….I think I was touched more by getting a pre-nomination….you get a pre-nom from the people that work with you….when that pre-nom came in I was soooo blown away that the people I work with even thought of me.”

You would think that a daytime Emmy nominee would be pacing the floor and waiting with anticipation, hoping their name will be called for their category right? Well not Bregman. “I was at home…it was during the time when there were all these fires raging out in Malibu, so my whole family was home with me which would not have typically happened,” she says. “I did not tell anyone that morning was the nomination morning because I was afraid that we would have this pathetic family moment of awww mommy did not get it if it did not happen,” she continued with a laugh.

However, luck was on Bregman’s side as her name was announced. “I was lying in bed watching the live feed of The View from New York, when my youngest son came in and asked what I was doing. I thought that they did the nominations by last name, not by show…so when they were past the B’s I turned to Landon and said I didn’t get it…but I was the last one nominated. As they mentioned my name my husband and my oldest son walked in the room and the phone started ringing, etc,” she says.

Even though most fans know Bregman from her portrayal of the sassy Lauren on Y&R, I asked her about another role that caused her to burst out in laughter……the role in the horror film Happy Birthday to Me. “What’s so funny is that some of the fans sent me the clips of myself in that film and I had not seen them in such a long time and I was like Oh My God,” she says chuckling. “In all honesty filming that movie was such an amazing experience….you had Glenn Ford in it and it was directed by J. Lee Thompson, who also directed The Guns of Navarrone and the original Planet of the Apes and worked under with Alfred Hitchcock. Working with him was such an amazing experience….it definitely was a lot of fun,” she says.

She did tell me an interesting little secret about the original ending of that movie though. “Originally, my character was not slated to be the murderer….when I was murdered that was it for my character,” says Bregman. She continues, “weird things would happen during filming and I would break out in laughter and the director would scream at me that I ruined his take, so he gave me the nickname crazy…….It was so funny to be yelled at for that and I think when they were watching the dailies they saw something different and rewrote the ending for me and that is how I ended up being the murderer,” she says laughing.

You would think that earning an Emmy nomination, starring in 3 different soap operas….she played Donna Craig on NBC’s Days of Our Lives back in the 70’s and “would not be opposed to bringing the character back to Days only if something happened with Y&R,” being in a front burner storyline and raising two teenage boys would be enough to keep this talented actress busy. Think again….. Bregman has many other irons in the fire as she enthusiastically shares.  “I’ve got a couple of pilots that I am working on, as well as a reality show called Celebrity Postcards from the Road which airs internationally and in Canada, but now we are planning on marketing it nationally and I have also written a pilot and am working on a musical.”

Tracy Bregman….consummate and talented pro, devoted mother and definitely one classy lady.  A true  pleasure to chat with and a treat for all our readers. I would like to thank her manager, Charles Sherman for setting up this interview and to Tracy for taking time from  her family outing to talk with us. To find out more about Tracey, her career, family and upcoming events…..check out her official site at:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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