It wouldn’t be the Nurses Ball without Nina Reeves (Michelle Stafford) hosting the red carpet special for Port Charles’ fictional affiliate station WXPC. Joining the character as guest co-host this year will be “Grey’s Anatomy” star Chandra Wilson as she tackles her third character on “General Hospital.”
According to PEOPLE, Wilson, 49, will appear as Sydney Val Jean, the East Coast fashion editor of Nina’s Crimson magazine, on the Friday, May 17 episode of “GH.” The episode officially kicks off the annual Nurses Ball event.
Wilson previously appeared on the soap in August of last year when she played therapist Dr. Linda Massey, and again in 2014 when she appeared as Tina Estrada, one of Kevin’s (Jon Lindstrom) patients who comes face to face with an unfamiliar nurse (Franco, played by Roger Howarth) and demands to know why HE is in her doctor’s office.
In images published by the magazine, Wilson can be seen in character all smiles as she chats it up with Felicia Jones (Kristina Wagner) and Mac Scorpio (John J. York) while a seething Nina looks on. According to PEOPLE, the two will go head-to-head “in a red carpet rivalry” at the annual HIV/AIDS fundraiser. Sounds very “Devil Wears Prada” like.
Daytime Confidential reports that Wilson’s characters name might sound familiar because it’s the last name of former “General Hospital” writer Michele Val Jean, who tells the site, “Elizabeth Korte [‘GH’ scriptwriter and associate head writer] called me one day and asked if I’d mind if they did a little tribute to me with Chandra’s character, that the name had cleared and she wanted to make sure I wouldn’t be upset. Of course, I was delighted and there it is.”
In addition to Wilson’s appearance, this year marks 25 years since Port Charles’ Lucy Coe (Lynn Herring) founded the event. Sadly, there was a gap of more than a decade when the show did not celebrate the event, most notably during Jill Farren Phelps‘ turn as executive producer (2001-2012). The event returned to Port Charles in 2013.
After filming her first stint on “GH,” Wilson talked to journalist Michael Logan and said, “[Executive Producer] Frank Valentini did hint around that he might invite me to return. I said, ‘Oooh, don’t you play with me, now!’ Because, trust me, I would do it again in a heartbeat.” Looks like the executive has made good on that several times over.
Speaking of Valentini, the producer tells PEOPLE, “This year will be particularly special and personal. We were able to incorporate original music and performances from a few of our actors, including James Patrick Stuart [Valentin Cassadine]. There’s a lot of heart in these amazing performances. You won’t want to miss them!”
The Nurses Ball kicks off on Friday, May 17, one day after Wilson appears in the 15th season finale of ABC’s “Grey’s Anatomy.”