Jack Wagner (actor)

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Jack Wagner (actor)
Jack Wagner 2009.jpg
Jack performing live in 2009
Born Peter John Wagner, II
(1959-10-03) October 3, 1959 (age 54)
Washington, Missouri, U.S.
Occupation Musician, actor
Years active 1982–present
Home town Washington, Missouri, U.S.
Spouse(s) Kristina Wagner (1993-2006; divorced)
Children 3

Peter John "Jack" Wagner, II (born October 3, 1959, Washington, Missouri) is an American actor and singer, best known for his roles on the soap operas General Hospital, Santa Barbara, The Bold and the Beautiful and Melrose Place.

Early years[edit]

Raised Catholic, Wagner attended St. Gertrude's parochial school and St. Francis Borgia Regional High School in his hometown, where he played football and basketball. He attended the University of Missouri for one year, then junior college before eventually enrolling at the University of Arizona, where he tried out for the golf team and drama department. The drama department offered him a full scholarship.[citation needed]

Acting career[edit]

Wagner first appeared on the scene in 1982 in the role of Clint Masterson in Douglas Marland's short-lived cable soap opera, A New Day In Eden (co-produced by Susan Flannery, who would later be Wagner's co-star on The Bold and the Beautiful).

His most famous role has been Frisco Jones on the soap opera General Hospital (1983–1988, 1989–1991, 1994–95, 2013). He was half of a supercouple with Kristina Wagner's Felicia and played the father of Georgie and Maxie Jones.

He also played Warren Lockridge on Santa Barbara from 1991 until that series' conclusion in 1993.

He appeared in several made for television films including Moving Target with Jason Bateman, Lady Killer with Judith Light, Frequent Flyer with Joan Severance, Nicole Eggert and Shelley Hack, and Dirty Little Secret opposite Tracey Gold.

He appeared for many years on the hit Aaron Spelling Fox nighttime soap opera Melrose Place as the alternately caring/conniving Dr. Peter Burns (1994–99), and directed episodes as well. His character and Heather Locklear's "Amanda" were featured in the series finale's final scene, having faked their own deaths and shown together on a beach.

He appeared in another Aaron Spelling project, the NBC television series Titans with Yasmine Bleeth in 2000, and in Spelling's daytime sudser Sunset Beach in 1997.

From 2003-2012 he played Nick Marone on the CBS daytime soap The Bold and the Beautiful.

In 1985, Wagner was nominated for a Daytime Emmy Award for "Best Younger Actor" for his work on General Hospital. He was nominated again in 2005 for "Best Lead Actor" for The Bold and the Beautiful.

Wagner has also guest-starred on primetime television in such notable programs as Monk, Hot in Cleveland, and Castle.

In January 2013 it was announced that Wagner had agreed to reprise the iconic role of Frisco Jones on General Hospital for several episodes in early 2013.

Dancing with the Stars[edit]

In 2012, Wagner was announced to be a contestant on the season 14 of the huge worldwide ABC hit primetime show Dancing with the Stars with professional partner Anna Trebunskaya.[1] They were eliminated from the competition on April 3, 2012 placing 11th.

Singing and Stage Career[edit]

Wagner has recorded six albums. In 1985, he topped the Billboard charts with the ballad "All I Need". The single reached #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 and hit #1 on the Adult Contemporary chart.

Albums[edit]

  • 1984: All I Need #44 Peak Billboard 200
  • 1985: Lighting Up the Night #150 / Peak Billboard 200
  • 1987: Don't Give Up Your Day Job #151 Peak Billboard 200
  • 1993: Alone in the Crowd
  • 2005: Dancing in the Moonlight
  • 2014: On The Porch

Singles[edit]

Year Single Chart Positions Album
US US AC AU
1984 "All I Need" 2 1 93 All I Need
1985 "Lady of My Heart" 76
"Too Young" 52 15 Lighting Up The Night
1986 "Love Can Take Us All The Way" 15
1987 "Weatherman Says" 67 Don't Give Up Your Day Job
2012 "Will The Rain Fall Down" Non-album single

Although Wagner had been playing the guitar since he was 14, his initial audition for the role of "Frisco Jones" on General Hospital with producer Gloria Monty did not include any singing.[2] Wagner had five auditions with ABC before ultimately winning the role of "Frisco Jones". His final audition in 1983 included performing the Kenny Loggins song "Wait a Little While."[3][4] ABC musical honcho Kelli Ross hooked Wagner up with her good friend in legendary producer Quincy Jones[3] who oversaw his initial 5 song EP "All I Need". Eventually, they would release a full ten song LP of "All I Need" once the song "All I Need" began to rise the charts. Quincy Jones protégés Glen Ballard and Clif Magness produced Wagner's first two albums on Qwest Records/Warner Brothers. Wagner's singing talents led him to appearances on American Bandstand, Solid Gold, Soul Train and The Merv Griffin Show.[2]

Eventually, his musical theater talent led to the title role(s) in a Broadway run of Jekyll & Hyde, making him the first celebrity casting. Wagner has stated this was "a role of a lifetime" and performing the dual characters on Broadway was his most fulfilling professional experience.[5] Wagner says "the role I had the most fun playing, TV-wise, would be Dr. Peter Burns (Melrose Place). He was sort of an evil character who could redeem himself. Theatrically, it was when I played Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde in Jekyll & Hyde on Broadway."[6] He also appeared in a national theatre tour in 1987 in the role of Tony in West Side Story, and a national tour of Grease in 1988.

While he toured as a rock/pop performer in concert consistently from 1985–1988, Wagner did not perform in the 1990s except for an occasional benefit appearance.[citation needed] In 2005, Wagner resumed performing in concert sporadically. His more recent concerts have included a diverse blend of songs from his own catalog, cover songs from artists such as Neil Young, Lindsey Buckingham, and Paul McCartney, and originals.

In 2012, Wagner released his first new music in several years "Will The Rain Fall Down" as a downloadable single on iTunes. He also performed the song acoustically on The Bold and the Beautiful.

Personal life[edit]

Wagner was married to actress Kristina Wagner, who played opposite him on General Hospital as his love interest Felicia Cummings. After marital troubles they filed for divorce twice;[citation needed] it was finalized in 2006.[7] The Wagners have two sons, Peter (born 1990) and Harrison (born 1994).[8] Wagner began dating his Melrose Place love interest Heather Locklear in 2007; they became engaged in August 2011.[9][10] Wagner said of his relationship with Locklear and the prospect of marriage: "[W]e're not rushing into anything - we're really focusing on being good parents." The couple called off their engagement on November 15, 2011.

In November 2011, Jack met his 23-year-old daughter, Kerry, for the first time at a concert in Florida. Kerry had been placed for adoption at birth by her birth mother, and had recently hired a private investigator to find both of her biological parents.[11] This was also the "personal story" of Wagner in his Dancing with the Stars performance on April 2, 2012.

Wagner is an avid golfer, and is ranked as one of the leading celebrity golfers. He is the only non-professional athlete to have won the American Century Celebrity Golf Classic, the annual competition to determine the best golfers among American sports and entertainment celebrities. Wagner first won the event in 2006, and repeated as champion in 2011, when he bested Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo .[12] Wagner also won the Missouri junior college championship in 1980, and at one point considered a career in pro golf.[2] He has a Celebrity Golf Classic named after him that raises funds for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Wagner created the event to support the Society's mission to cure such cancers as leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin's disease, and myeloma, and to improve the quality of life of patients and their families. The Golf Classic raised more than $600,000 in its first two years to fund critical cancer research and patient services.[citation needed]

In May 2013, Wagner confirmed to Soaps In Depth that he and his former The Bold and the Beautiful co-star Ashley Jones have been dating for about a year.[13]

Miscellaneous[edit]

Selected Stage Work Highlights[edit]

  • Butterfly - Pink (1987) East Haddam Playhouse, Connecticut
  • West Side Story - Tony (1987) National Touring Company
  • Grease - Danny Zuko (1988) National Touring Company
  • They're Playing Our Song (1992) Long Beach Civic Light Opera, California
  • Jekyll & Hyde - Dr. Henry Jekyll / Edward Hyde (2000) Broadway

References[edit]

External links[edit]