Summer may be over, but “The Young and the Restless” is keeping it hot with a special guest appearance by real-life Chippendales dancer Jaymes Vaughan, who’s scheduled to put on a seriously sexy strip show during Sharon’s (Sharon Case) upcoming bachelorette party! But what exactly can viewers expect when he hits the scene? Soap Opera Network caught up with the dancer, who bared all in an interview regarding his time in Genoa City.
Fans first got a glimpse of Vaughan’s scandalous visit to “Y&R” via a recent promo that showed him getting down and getting dirty. And in the newest clip released by the sudser that previews his debut on Tuesday, September 30, viewers see him shake it like nobody’s business — which Vaughan says was a seriously easy challenge, considering he performs as a Chippendales dancer in Las Vegas. “I do this every night, so it’s one of those things that’s become second nature; I pretty much have experience playing this character seven nights a week, so… it was probably the easiest character study I’ve ever had to do!”
Especially because, as he explains, Sharon Case made it extremely simple for him to focus on the fun task at hand. “She has this smile about her, she’s very endearing, very welcoming, very warm,” he shares of the actress. “She’s really cool. And honestly, within like two minutes of meeting her, I felt like I knew her, and I thought, ‘Ok, we’re going to be dancing together. Let’s go!’”
But showing off shirtless isn’t all that Vaughan will be doing when he appears in Genoa City: He’ll start the action as a bouncer and later has some lines to beef up his part. “I’m not just coming in and taking my clothes off!” he says with a laugh. “What you see in the preview is all I’m going to be able to give you for now. There’s interaction with some other characters, but I’m going to leave you guessing as to who was who, because it definitely makes the episode much more exciting.”
Though Vaughan wasn’t very familiar with soap operas before landing the role, he shares that his father became a fan of the CBS sudser and watched it nearly every day. Unfortunately, his dad recently passed away, but the dancer/actor is pretty sure he’s quite aware of his son’s upcoming gig on the series. “I was on another CBS show, ‘The Amazing Race,’ and I went to try and make money for my dad and a cancer program,” he says. “He actually passed away right after that, but it’s one of those things where, I know my dad is watching and just kind of giggling and laughing along with everything that I’m doing, and when it happened, it was one of those things where my dad was like, ‘Hey, I’m watching you.’ Like, this is me saying, ‘Of all the soap operas that you could have had your first soap opera audition for, you got an audition for ‘The Young and the Restless’ and you booked it.’ My dad and I always had a really cool relationship where everything was always really funny, so I was kind of laughing, like, ‘Of course you got this job, and of course you’re shirtless on the soap opera. Why wouldn’t you be?!’”
While most daytime newbies are overwhelmed with the pace that the shows keep, Vaughan wasn’t phased by the breakneck speed. “I’m fortunate in the fact that I have experience in TV from kind of all different sides: I’m also a correspondent for OK! TV, I host a TV show in Vegas, I do a live show in Vegas, I also have a theater background, I’ve kind of done all aspects of the entertainment industry, so for me, I’m just used to some things being fast and some things being slow,” he says. “For me, it wasn’t so much the fact that it was moving so fast. It was really being impressed with the other actors on set and how great they were in the first take, every time. I was like, ‘Wow, these are professionals.’ You want a quick crash course in how to be an amazing actor, go watch the cast of ‘The Young and the Restless’ lay down a scene. It was like, ‘BAM!’ I just couldn’t believe how quick they were and how great they were every time. I was like, ‘Is somebody going to mess up? Oh god, I hope it’s not me! Because you’re not messing up.’ They were great.
“I was so impressed by the cast,” he continues. “I was amazed with was how nice everybody was! Everybody came up to say hey to you when you got on set, everybody was just so welcoming. And then all of a sudden, they switch, and if somebody is mad at somebody [in a scene], they’re mad at each other so quick. They just slip right into character. But they were great. They work their butts off. Soap opera actors do get a bad rap sometimes, but I’m like, ‘Mmmm, nope. They pretty much throw it down harder than anybody else in the acting world.’”
Though some people might think that being a Chippendales dancer wouldn’t get one very far in the entertainment industry, Vaughan says it’s completely opposite. “It really is an avenue that opens doors,” he shares. “I auditioned for ‘Amazing Race’ like five years ago, and they didn’t even remember me, but I auditioned as a Chippendale, and boom, got on the show. Things like this, walking into this audition for ‘The Young and the Restless,’ obviously, having a Chippendales background is definitely going to help you as an actor portray a role at a bachelorette party situation. It really does open a lot of door for me… It’s amazing the stuff that I get to do that people don’t realize Chippendales does for you, because it’s a name brand —Chippendales Male Revue —that everybody knows. So even though you might not particularly be famous yourself, the brand is, so you get to kind of piggyback on that, which is really cool.”
And Vaughan says he actually credits his path to Channing Tatum, who he says opened doors for male strippers. “Channing Tatum started in a strip club. Not even what we do, he was in a straight up strip club, and look at the career he has now,” the actor points out. “Look at the movie franchise he created off of it. I mean, it’s one of those things now with our industry, that he sort of set a precedent for. So now, I feel like because of that, when I meet the guy eventually one day, I’m going to shake his hand and be like, ‘You really did set a precedent for this,’ and I’ve been able to really milk the Chippendales thing because of things like that.”
But could it possibly lead to a full-time soap opera gig? Time will tell, but Vaughan would absolutely welcome the opportunity. “Oh my gosh, are you kidding me?” he exclaims. “Who doesn’t want that gig? Who doesn’t want to go in and get to play some amazing dynamic character every day of your life? How fun is that, as an actor, kind of a dream job, to get to go in and act every day. So hell yeah, I would love to do something like this again… I had a blast [at ‘Y&R’]. I can’t wait to see how much fun we had there to translate onscreen. It was a blast.”