TVSource Magazine had the opportunity to interview The Bay star Lilly Melgar about her many different roles both on and off camera.
Perhaps best known for her roles on daytime soap operas General Hospital and The Bold and the Beautiful, there’s a lot more to Melgar than fans may realize. When not bringing characters to life through acting, Lilly Melgar is directing, producing, running her own skin care company and so much more!
The Emmy-nominated, four-time Indie Series Award winning online soap The Bay recently wrapped up its latest and most provocative chapter yet. One of the series’ most talked about story lines is the controversial romance between the sexy Janice Ramos (played by Melgar) and the much younger Peter Garrett (Kristos Andrews). Not your typical cougar tale, the story is both thought provoking and incredibly touching.
TVSource Magazine: You made your daytime debut on General Hospital as leading man Sonny’s (Maurice Benard) ill-fated wife Lily. In a scene commonly known as “Clink Boom,” Lily famously died in a car explosion that was meant for Sonny. The character was so popular that you were later brought back as her look-a-like. Why do you think Lily had such a big impact on the audience?
Lilly Melgar: Funny timing on this question. Today is the 18th anniversary of Clink Boom [This interview was conducted May 31, 2014]. Lily had an impact because she came between one of daytime’s hottest couples at the time. She was either loved or hated, no in between. With this said, Lily brought out a softer side to Sonny. She made him feel safe. Though he struggled with his passion for Brenda, in the end, it was Lily that he chose. He was finally happy and that’s when she blew up in one of daytime’s most epic deaths. This had the most profound impact on the character of Sonny.
TVSource Magazine: On The Bay, your character Janice and Peter (Kristos Andrews) aka Jeter have developed a bit of a cult following. What is about the unique pairing that you think fans find so relatable?
Melgar: That’s a very good question. I’m not quite sure I know the answer. I think it’s human nature to be attracted to the forbidden. These two characters have so many reasons not to be together that it heightens the stakes, and therefore the attraction. It’s so wrong, that it can’t help feeling so right! If that makes any sense. This pairing seems to work because they balance each other. He seems to calm her and she brings out the man in Pete. She’s incredibly conflicted but her growing emotions are undeniable. I think most people can relate to falling for someone they shouldn’t of and the passion that comes with it. Maybe they’re rooting for the underdog.
TVSource Magazine: One of the elements that makes Janice’s relationship with Peter so taboo is the fact that he used to date her daughter Lianna (Jade Harlow). Janice and Lianna have a bit of a strained relationship right now. Janice doesn’t know just how much trouble Lianna is getting herself into these days. Is there any hope of salvaging their relationship or will things continue to get worse?
Melgar: I can’t imagine things getting better between them with the choice Janice’s heart has made. My hope is that after all is revealed that mother and daughter will find their way back to each other.
TVSource Magazine: One thing you and Janice have in common is that you’re both smart business women. You have your own skin care line Scentual by Lilly. What made you decide to start your own company?
Melgar: I actually launched it less than a year ago and it’s already been in the Primetime Emmy Nominee, Golden Globe nominee and Oscar nominee gift bags! I believe it started so strong because it was created with so much love. I have been a product whore for decades! [Laughs] I’ve taken “aging gracefully” very seriously. I would research ingredients and blend different products to create my own. It’s been a dream of mine for years! The opportunity finally opened up and I didn’t think twice about it. Within two months, I had my line and a month later my coconut oil based candle collection as well. This year I’ll be launching my fragrance roll-ons. So, to answer your question, the thought wasn’t really about starting my own company, it was about creating products I loved and believed in. Products that not only feel good and smell amazing, but products that actually make a positive difference.
TVSource Magazine: What kind of products does Scentual by Lilly offer?
Melgar: I have hand and body washes, body lotions, whipped body butters, whipped shea butters, body scrubs, facial spritzers, candles and the fragrance roll-ons that come out later this year.
TVSource Magazine: In addition to being an actor and entrepreneur, you’re also a director. You directed the opening video for The Spice Girls Reunion Tour and short films for Britney Spears’ Femme Fatale Tour. What led to your decision to step behind the camera?
Melgar: Stepping behind the camera was actually ‘fate.’ My male best friend of 20 years saw that raw talent in me. I don’t know if I would have dared to pursue it if he hadn’t offered me the opportunity. He is the creative director for video content for major concert tours. My directorial debut was the opening video for the Spice Girls Reunion Tour. I fell in love with the process and am just as passionate behind the camera as I am in front of it. What a gift he gave me…the opportunity to discover a new talent. I have been working with/for him ever since. The short videos shown throughout the Britney Spears Femme Fatale Tour are my proudest moment yet as a director. It was amazing to be in the position to hire a fellow ex-soap actor as my villain. Rudolf Martin (ex-Anton Lang, All My Children) was fantastic to work with. I also got to co-direct on the film I produced and sold to Lionsgate two years ago, Black Cobra. I’d like to direct a film in the near future.
TVSource Magazine: Which one of your many hats do you prefer? Actor, Entrepreneur, or Director?
Melgar: I’m also a host and producer! [Laughs] Right now, I am having a blast co-hosting “Soap Box with Lilly and Martha,” which takes me back to my original roots. I started my career as a host on Univision. My first love has always been acting. I love to create, so having the opportunity to play with scents and ingredients and create beautiful products to share with others, makes me so happy! Getting behind the camera as a director, is exhilarating! Lastly, producing allows me to be a part of the product from beginning to end. I get to be a part of the entire process of bringing a script to life, which is incredibly fulfilling. I can’t say I prefer one over the other, I’d rather continue creating ways to ‘get’ to do them all. [Smiles]