With the Soap Opera Mania Tour in full swing now, I touched base with One Life to Live’s John-Paul Lavoisier (Rex Balsom) this morning to chat about his experience with the tour so far.

Calling me from a gym lobby, while visiting his on and off screen girlfriend’s, Farah Fath’s (Gigi Morasco) family in Kentucky, John-Paul informed that, as of yet, he’s only appeared at two Soap Opera Mania Tour events, one weekend, in two cities, Cleveland and Columbus, and gave us a peek into which city stuck out most for him. “I think it was Columbus… It seemed to have more ABC fans than Cleveland did,” John-Paul said then talked about a memorable fan encounter that he got such a kick out of. “There was this little girl from Columbus, she was about ten, who hovered over my autograph line all day – the cutest little thing! She was begging me to let her audition and play Rex’s girlfriend, and her mom even approved it! After taking lots of pictures of me, about every fifteen minutes she would ask me for a hug. It’s great when the younger ones know you and the storylines that surround your character.”

Wondering how he worked the Soap Mania events into his One Life to Live schedule, John-Paul explained how Mike Gold, who is in charge of the events, books them on the weekends, around the actor’s work schedules. “Mike books the events for Saturdays and Sundays. We fly out on Friday night. I don’t know that anyone has had to take work off, or if Mike just manages to work around our schedules. He always has us flying home on Sundays, right after the last event, in order for us to be at work on Monday.”

The list of actors who appear on the tour is amazing, so of course I found myself wondering if John-Paul knew any of those outside of the One Life to Live crew, or if he made any friends along the way. “I’ve met all of the actors who were at the two events with me at one time or another, during Daytime parties or different events. I really got to know The Young and the Restless’ Cristian LeBlanc (Michael Baldwin), who had me in tears laughing during the whole time. Days of Our Lives’ James Scott (EJ DiMera) was really cool too.”

For those who have attended any of the previous two original Soap Cruises, which are directly affiliated with the Soap Opera Mania Tour, you may wonder why John-Paul hasn’t been in attendance, and he comically answered, “I can’t do it. I hate the water. If the boat is docked, I’ll get on it, but for those of you who haven’t watched the news lately – there’s pirates out there!”

Ending our Soap Opera Mania talk, John Paul wanted to send his fans a message about the tour. “Mike Gold’s Soap Opera Mania Tour,” John-Paul expressed. “Is the most intense way to get up close and personal with your favorite Daytime stars for about five hours!”

For those who didn’t read Part two of the interview, where John-Paul gave us a look into his character, Rex Balsom, you can read this in our One Life to Live News Room! If you want to see what John-Paul had to say in response to some of our Soaps.com readers’ questions, you can find out here!

– Amy Mistretta