So I know that I’ve been AWOL from the blog for awhile…..Sorry!
It’s called – real life intervening…full-time job, family, friends, obligations…..
But today I have a real treat.
An interview with the mult-talented Tonja Walker Davidson, portrayer of that scheming vixen Alex Olanov on One Life To Live, a role she originated in 1990.
In addition to Alex, Tonja’s other soap roles were Lizbeth Bachman on Capitol 1982-1986, Olivia St. John Jerome on General Hospital 1988-1990, Marie Green on Guiding Light 2003-2004 and Grace Nancier on Passions 2007.
She also produced the movie “The Derby Stallion” that came out in 2007 starring none other than big-screen, teenage heartthrob, Zac Efron. That was before he catapuled to fame in High School Musical. Tonja played his mother in the film and her real-life daughters, Isabella and Abrianna, played her daughters.
Also in the movie, Crystal Hunt….you know her as Gigi’s evil sister, Stacy, on OLTL.
Tonja is, not only an incredible actress, but she’s also a singer, producer, writer, and, above all, a wife and mom.
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Tonja Walker
When last we saw Alex on OLTL in January, she was on the island that she blackmailed Nigel into signing over to her after Asa’s death. But the tables were turned a bit on her when Dorian blackmailed Alex into telling her the truth about David Vickers (Tuc Watkins) being a Buchanan.
I spoke with Tonja by phone recently and here’s what she had to say about her future plans on and off OLTL.
Michele: When will we see Alex again on OLTL?
Tonja: “I have no idea. What they normally do is call me and if I’m available, they book me. I’m on recurring status, but I just never know when that’s going to happen.”
Michele: What is the One Life To Live studio like?
Tonja: “At One Life To Live, everyone is down in the basement, except the executives, who are on the second floor. So the rest of us are down there like moles without windows. That’s where the dressing rooms are and the coffee and the green room and the rehearsal hall. Everything’s down there except for the stage and there’s no windows on the stage.”
Michele: Do you enjoy playing Alex?
Tonja: “Of course, I think it’s the greatest thing ever! When Alex was nice in the very beginning, it really wasn’t that much fun.”
Tonja remembers one day, back in the early days of her character, reading in one of the tabloids that Alex was going to be involved in a fatal attraction storyline on OLTL, where she would be killed off.
Tonja: “People starting writing in. A lot of people wrote in, this was before computers, and they kept me on the show for 8 years after that and more….to this day. So the next thing you know, I go to this mental institution for this fatal attraction, I don’t die and they bring in Michael Malone (as head writer) and he wrote me with Carlo Hesser (Thom Christopher) and I think that’s the most fun I’ve had in my life as an actress. We had such an incredible chemistry. We were funny. We were sexy. We were crazy.”
Michele: What is Thom Christopher like to work with?
Tonja: “He’s the most professional, the most generous. He’s a consumate actor. He takes it real seriously. He’s always 100 percent on. He’s always trying to make it better. He’s one of my favorite people and I have a tremendous amount of respect for him.
“And then they put me with [the late] Phil Carey (as Asa Buchanan). That was fun. It wasn’t the same chemistry as I had with Thom, but it was fun and, of course, being a Buchanan is good for your bank account. Some of that stuff was pretty wacky. And, somehow, they turned Alex into a gold digger, which she never was.”
Tonja left OLTL in 1997 and went to Hollywood.
Tonja: “I was doing really well during pilot season and my sister said, ‘You have to go to the Deepak Chopra Center for Well Being.’ She said, ‘I have a strong feeling you should go.’ I met Ed (Edward Davidson, her husband) there and the rest is history. I have two beautiful children.”
In the past decade, Tonja has gotten called back to OLTL several times for short stints.
Tonja: “I really wanted to be with the kids, because I waited so long to have them. I would have never been happy if I just stayed working and not had children. And it wasn’t in the cards for me to be on TV and work and have kids at the same time.
“It was important to me to be with my kids until they really seemed like they were on their own path. Now Isabella is 10 and Abrianna is 9 and I can do more stuff and more work. But, to me, the best thing in the world you can produce is children and, for me, it’s the best thing I’ve ever done by far.”
Michele: What else are you doing careerwise?
Tonja: “Right now I’m writing a nighttime television series, a nighttime soap opera, it’s about “Mommies in Manhattan” and what it’s like to raise children in Manhattan. It’s directly from my life. I lived in New York for five years and I had my children in a private girls school in Manhattan. It was a rude awakening. I’d never been on the East Side. I was an Upper West Side actor/artist/single person and then I was on the upper East Side with all the moms. It was so weird and so funny. People who watch this are going to recognize themselves. I’ve got the first draft and we’ll see what happens.
“And I’ve written a children’s book. Right now, I’m putting the words and pictures together before sending it to a publisher. It’s called “Wear a Silly Hat.”
Tonja will be performing May 17 in the Cabaret Cares Gala at the Laurie Beechman Theatre in NYC.
There are limited tickets available. To purchase tickets call 718-672-6714 or 917-589-6658
or email Joseph Macchia at jjmac249@aol.com
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I have more material from Tonja’s interview, which I will post early next week.
So Stay Tuned.

One Response to “Exclusive Interview with Tonja Walker Davidson (Alex Olanov/OLTL)”

  1. I love the interview
    with Tonja Walker. I believe at one time she lived in the Cleveland area and she did a show at the Tangier in Akron. What a beautiful and classy lady!