Pete visits One Life To Live set…


THE LOBBY OF ONE LIFE TO LIVE STUDIOS
in New York is as far as our cameras were allowed to go. It’s all very hush-hush you know, as to not spoil plotlines and cliffhangers.

Pete visits One Life To Live set: A big thanks is in order to One Life To Live senior staff, who made good on their promise to give me a VIP tour of their New York studio. When Production Manager Brian O’Meara and Producer John Tumino came to Seaside Heights to get their filming permit earlier this year, I asked if one day I could come up to their studio and see it for myself. They agreed, and the big day was Tuesday May 6th.
OLTL headquarters is at 56 W. 66th street in Manhattan, near Lincoln Center. Seeing the studio and the elaborate operation that is required to make the show was really fascinating. I learned that OLTL has no permanent sets. The production floor of the daytime drama is akin to a large warehouse. Above the floor is a numbered grid with lights attached. Set elements are trucked in, assembled and removed each day depending on need. Everything is laid out on the grid according to a daily-produced map, and the lighting is adjusted accordingly. The show is filmed using four cameras, while production staff watch monitors in an adjoining room. After the show is filmed, it is scored and edited using AVID software. Each show is 38 minutes of footage with the remainder of the time used for commercials and promos. OLTL is seen on every ABC affiliate in the United States, and on the cable channel SoapNet.
It is obvious to me that the One Life to Live staff is like a close-knit family. Through my experience as local host of their four-day location shoot, I have begun to feel a small part of this family, sort of like a third cousin, once removed. During my time at OLTL studios, I recognized, and was recognized by many of the staff. Among others I saw this day were interns C.J. Ferroni and Beth Armstrong, Bob Bossoir, Director of Photography, and Suzanne Flynn, Senior Producer. Although I didn’t get to talk to them directly, I was in the presence of OLTL’s biggest stars, including Erika Slezak (Viki) and Robin Strasser (Dorian), who have been on the show for most of its 40-year run.
Coincidentally, my visit occurred during the same week that Andrea Evans, who is notorious for her role as femme fatale Tina Lord, returned to One Life To Live studios and filmed her first-ever scenes after an 18-year absence. Some readers may know that when I first met the OLTL staff, I asked what were the chances of the original Tina returning, and they hinted that she might be. A few weeks later, I learned that my favorite character of all-time would be returning to the soap.

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