Andrea Evans, the two-time Daytime Emmy nominated actor who rose to fame in the 1970s and ’80s as the troublemaking teen Tina Lord on the ABC soap One Life To Live, died Sunday of cancer.
She was 66.Her death was announced by casting director Don Carroll. Following her signature role on One Life To Live, Evans went on to play Patty Williams on CBS’ The Young and the Restless, Tawny Moore on CBS’ The Bold and the Beautiful, Rebecca Hotchkiss on NBC’s Passions and Patty Walker on Amazon Prime’s The Bay.
Born in Aurora, Illinois, Evans had appeared in beauty pageants and regional theater when she appeared as an extra in Brian De Palma’s 1978 horror classic The Fury.
That year she also appeared in miniseries The Awakening Land, and soon drew the attention of legendary soap casting director Mary Jo Slater, who tapped her for the coveted role of Tina Lord, One Life To Live‘s answer to All My Children‘s Erica Kane.
Evans’ One Life co-star Robin Strasser remembered the actor as “a woman who was super smart & energized a heat seeking missile. That’s a compliment. You knew when you worked with her, it’d be like going head to head with a champion. I admired her daring. I hate the disease that took her.”
Evans’ bad-girl portrayal was a quick success with viewers, and she remained in the role until 1981, when she left to portray Patty Williams on The Young and the Restless from 1983 to 1984. She returned to One Life in 1985, and was nominated for a Daytime Emmy in 1988.
Two years after her Emmy nomination, she abruptly quit the show and remained out of public view for almost 10 years, only later revealing the cause: She had been the victim of a stalker.
In a 2008 People magazine interview, Evans said she abandoned her career and New York City when the stalker’s actions grew increasingly violent.
She revealed that in 1987 she’d been accosted in the lobby of One Life to Live’s Manhattan studio by the stalker and that the man soon thereafter slashed his wrists on the front steps of the studio. Taken to a psychiatric hospital, the man listed Evans as his next of kin, and began sending her death threats written in blood.
A few years after the incident, the man was detained outside the Secretary of State’s office in Washington, D.C., carrying a meat cleaver and a picture of Evans, according to People. The fear, she said, “forever changed me.” She eventually began accepting acting roles, but remained terrified of participating in public events.
She returned to One Life To Live and her most famous role in 2008 and again in 2011, saying, “It’s time to give the audience what they want. And it’s time for me to get closure on why I left in the first place.” Evans received her second Daytime Emmy nomination in 2015 for her performance in the web series DeVanity.
Primetime credits include Circus of the Stars and Hollywood Squares. She had recently completed work on her forthcoming memoir My One Life To Live.
In addition to her professional ventures, Evans devoted considerable time to various animal rescue organizations and for City of Hope. She is survived by husband Steve Rodriguez and daughter Kylie.