It's been quite a year for Days of our Lives' Mary Beth Evans (Kayla Brady), who was not only spoiled with exciting material leading up to and throughout the soap's 50th anniversary, but also just found out she has received her very first Daytime Emmy Award nomination in the Outstanding Lead Actress category after almost 30 years of playing Shawn and Caroline's Salem daughter. Soap Central caught up with the actress to find out how finally landing the honor feels, and you'll never guess what she'll be doing as part of her celebration!
soapcentral.com: Congratulations, Mary Beth!
Mary Beth Evans: Thank you! I am so excited. What a fun day it's been.
soapcentral.com: This is your first time going through this Emmy craziness. How is it feeling?
Evans: I think it's incredible. And I think today, hearing about it, is probably going to be the most exciting moment of the whole event. It's just so exciting. I started Days of our Lives in 1986, so 30 years later, to actually get nominated, is such an honor. I feel so lucky and happy and thankful. It was such a good year, such a creative year, with Josh [Griffith] and Dena [Higley] writing and Albert [Alarr] producing. It was just really a great year, and having Peter [Reckell, Bo] come back, and that whole storyline, it was such a gift. It was just a really creative, fun year and so exciting to have this be the icing on the cake. I was already so happy for the year we had!
soapcentral.com: How did you find out that you had been nominated?
Evans: I was actually in my car, and my manager, Michael Bruno, called me on the phone, and he was screaming, and then I started screaming. It was very cute. He's one of my best friends and just the sweetest supporter of me, so it was really exciting.
soapcentral.com: Have you had time to share the news with family and friends yet?
Evans: My daughter called me crying. I had sent her a thing about it, and she called me crying and put it on Instagram or Facebook or something, I don't know. But she was just so excited for me. And my husband is actually in surgery, but he did send me a quick text to say congratulations. He was so incredibly happy for me, and that was cute. It's like your birthday! Everybody is reaching out. It's fun. So exciting.
soapcentral.com: Which scenes did you submit?
Evans: They were scenes when I was telling Bo he had his brain tumor. And then the one in the closet with Stephen [Nichols, Patch], the humorous one. I did contrast.
soapcentral.com: And it paid off!
Evans: Well, I don't know about that. Who knows what the secret is, because the other nominees, I saw everybody's tapes, and they were all so fabulous. Finola's [Hughes, Anna Devane, General Hospital] was one continuous thing in one scene, and everybody had such different things. And Kassie [DePaiva, ex-Eve], Kassie's blew me away. Her whole thing after her daughter dies on the show. Everybody just submitted such great things. It's a tough group. There are a lot of really good people in the group. But I don't want to think about that today; today I just want to do the happy part!
soapcentral.com: Is there anyone you thought was missing from the list?
Evans: Absolutely. Kate Mansi [Abigail Deveraux]. I thought she was going to win the Emmy, let alone I thought for sure she was going to be nominated, hands down. I told her that for months, and I am beyond shocked, seriously. I thought she was incredible. She was so nuanced, and she gave such beautiful performances the whole season, but definitely in her submissions. So I don't understand that one at all. But really, this year, we had such good writing, good acting, good producing, so much going on, and that's why I think we had the nominations we do, and the pre-noms, where there were even more, because the show really put out a lot of good stuff this year.
soapcentral.com: I know you just found out you've been nominated, but have you thought about what you'll wear?
Evans: No, just something with sleeves. I'm always looking for things with sleeves! That'll be next, I suppose. I'm just happy to have this honor and I'm celebrating this part. Kevin Spacey once said in his Academy Award speech that his father had said to enjoy the process because it doesn't get better than that, and I totally agree with that. I think this is the best part, so I'm just going to enjoy this. And I'm looking forward to having lunches with the other nominees. I get to do all that stuff you see in magazines! It's going to be so much fun! I think all of that is going to be the fun part, and the actual day will be terrifying.
soapcentral.com: Do you have any plans to celebrate tonight?
Evans: I'm actually driving to Mexico right now, because my son is actually getting married. So it's a big weekend! I have this, and then I'm going there for that. It's a really fun, exciting weekend. So I'll be in the car, driving.
soapcentral.com: You must be elated, getting the nomination and your son is getting married. So much to take in!
Evans: I know! It's such an exciting weekend. Really exiting.
soapcentral.com: Well, hopefully you can blast some music in the car and sing to get all that energy out. You've got to do something!
Evans: Yeah, exactly. I need to get out and run around the car a few times!
What do you think about Evans landing her first Emmy nomination? Do you think she'll take home the Gold? We want to hear from you -- and there are many ways you can share your thoughts.