Cady McClain remembers All My Children in touching "would-be 50th anniversary" post
Posted Monday, January 06, 2020 6:26:29 AM
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On what would have been All My Children's 50th anniversary, Cady McClain (ex-Dixie Cooney) celebrates the Agnes Nixon-created soap opera: "I will always be grateful for the experience .... and for the lifelong relationship with all the fans!"

All My Children immediately won the hearts of television audiences when it first aired on January 5, 1970, and even though the soap opera is no longer on the air today, it is still much-beloved and remembered, as evidenced by the outpouring of posts and memories about the series on what would have been its 50th anniversary.

Over the weekend, several fans and people connected to AMC took a moment to post about the series (including Soap Central, which you can read here and here), but longtime cast member Cady McClain, who began playing Dixie Cooney in 1989 and shot to fame as part of the show's popular Tad (Michael E. Knight) and Dixie supercouple, shared an extra special Instagram message about what the Agnes Nixon-created soap opera meant to her.

"Today I am celebrating the 50th Anniversary of All My Children! I started on the show when I had just turned 19 in the fall of 1988," McClain begins her lengthy and heartfelt post. "For many years this show and the people on it were like family to me. The makeup artists as much mom's as my own mom to me at times. And thanks to the work I was able to afford some art school and college as well. I saw many great shows (both American and International) that came to NYC, which opened my eyes to what performance could be. It allowed me to do a lot of Off-Broadway theater and roles in five Indie films while working my day job. I was nominated three times and won my first Emmy."

McClain also mentions some of the lifelong friends she made while starring on AMC, including Knight, who now appears on General Hospital as Martin Grey; James Patrick Stewart, who played Will Cortlandt and now stars as GH character Valentin Cassadine; Jill Larson, who played Opal Cortlandt; Penny Bergman, who worked behind-the-scenes on the show; Julia Barr, who played Brooke English; Lonnie Quinn, a CBS news reporter who briefly played Will Cortlandt; and "many others both in front of and behind the scenes."

The actress also uses the post as an opportunity to give thanks to many people involved with the show as well as to her fans.

"Thank you ABC and all the producers and writers who supported me and my work. Because of your support my life was richer, broader, more interesting," she shares. "I will always be grateful for the experience .... and for the lifelong relationship with all the fans! Massive shout out to the daytime fans who continue to support me in my projects. When I meet one of you on the street I am truly grateful for your time and that we got to share some really special moments together."

View this post on Instagram

Today I am celebrating the 50th Anniversary of "All My Children"! I started on the show when I had just turned 19 in the fall of 1988. I worked as a contract player thru 1996. I was back in the fall of 1997 again under contract and worked through 2001. That's roughly 13 years. Then I came back for a year in 2006, then for a couple months in 2012. Then I did the internet version for six weeks and then... the show was done. For many years this show and the people on it were like family to me. The makeup artists as much mom's as my own mom to me at times. And thanks to the work I was able to afford some art school and college as well. I saw many great shows (both American and International) that came to NYC, which opened my eyes to what performance could be. It allowed me to do a lot of Off-Broadway theater and roles in five Indie films while working my day job. I was nominated three times and won my first Emmy. I made some lifelong friends like Michael E. Knight, James Patrick Stewart, Jill Larson, Penny Bergman, Julia Barr, Lonnie Quinn and many others both in front of and behind the scenes. And most importantly, I was able to take care of my wild but wonderful mother. 'She who drove me nuts' but impressed on me the importance of having art in ones life. Who read me poems and took me to museums. My child who died but who I so grateful to have known. Thank you ABC and all the producers and writers who supported me and my work. Because of your support my life was richer, broader, more interesting. I will always be grateful for the experience .... and for the lifelong relationship with all the fans! Massive shout out to the daytime fans who continue to support me in my projects. When I meet one of you on the street I am truly grateful for your time and that we got to share some really special moments together. . . @abcnetwork @japastu @larson_jill @lalunaproductions #daytimetelevision #soapoperadigest #soapopera #michaelknight #tadanddixie

A post shared by Cady McClain (@cadymcclain) on

Set in the fictional town of Pine Valley, Pennsylvania, All My Children aired on ABC for 41 years, from January 5, 1970, to September 23, 2011, and on the Online Network (TOLN) from April 29 to September 2, 2013. Creator Agnes Nixon first came up with the idea for AMC while she was working as head writer for the CBS soap Guiding Light in the 1960s. After she was unable to sell the light-hearted soap opera that focused on social issues and young love to CBS or NBC, she shelved the series before going on to become the head writer for Another World.

While working on AW, however, Nixon didn't forget about All My Children. In fact, she used the model of Erica Kane -- who became the most popular character on AMC, played by Susan Lucci -- to create a new Another World character named Rachel Davis. Said Nixon at the time, "Rachel was Erica's precursor to the public ... [What] Erica and Rachel have in common is they thought if they could get their dream, they'd be satisfied... But that dream has been elusive."

In the mid-1960s, ABC approached Nixon to create a soap opera that would reflect a more contemporary tone, and she gave them One Life to Live, which debuted in 1968. After OLTL became a success, the network asked her for another program, which is when her original baby, All My Children, was finally given its chance to shine.

What do you think about Cady McClain's post in celebration of what would have been All My Children's 50th anniversary? How did AMC affect or influence your life? We want to hear from you -- and there are many ways you can share your thoughts.

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