Ricky Paull Goldin burst onto the soap scene in 1990 as rebellious rock singer Dean Frame on Another World. After a successful tour in Bay City, he performed in the Broadway revival of Grease! (playing Danny Zucko) and subsequently moved to Los Angeles, where he worked in episodic television and film.

Like many former daytime stars, Goldin's returned to soaps this year. This time around he's on Y&R as Gary Dawson, an aggressive marketing executive at Newman Enterprises. Goldin recently sat down with TV Guide Online to reflect on his AW tenure, discuss his nonsoap projects, and give some insight into the mysterious Gary, whom the actor says may — or may not — be Victoria's way-too-ardent admirer.— Michael J. Maloney

What brought you back to daytime and to Y&R?

I asked, "Who's the best manager that handles [daytime actors]?" And I learned it was Michael Bruno. He's a mastermind. He sees things the way I see things. I'm not saying this about Y&R, but sometimes executives on shows can't put the pieces together. But Michael can. He's a facilitator. He's wonderful. He's the only person I'm working with right now. I parted with my agents and other managers. It's just Michael and a lawyer. That's all I got. I met the brass at Y&R last year for the role of Tony when Nick Scotti was leaving. (Note: Jay Bontatibus won the part.) Everyone at Y&R was so wonderful. Five months later, we got the call for the role of Gary.

What have they told you about Gary?

Not a lot. I'm not told anything. I've been given carte blanche with creating this character. I know everything about him. I know who [Victoria's] stalker is and I know where the story is going and whether Gary or someone else is the stalker. My job is to keep it fun to watch. I've said this before, but as an actor I need to jump out of the television and into people's living rooms.

Why did you leave Another World?

The decision was kind of made for me — my contract was up. I stayed for a half-a-year longer on a month-to-month basis. At the time that I left, I had the daytime gig, but I also had a Broadway gig lined up. I could only take it if I committed myself to traveling with the show for one year on the national tour before it went to Broadway. I had to leave [AW] in order to fulfill that obligation.

Dean and Jenna were very popular — Was it difficult to leave?

It was. I took a leap of faith. There's an old Japanese proverb, "Leap and the net will appear." I wouldn't trade the experiences that I've had between now and then for anything in the world. I loved the show and the people there. I was a little tired of my story, to be honest. Dean and Jenna were so "together" it was nauseating. There was no conflict. It started to show. I didn't know for any other way to say, "I love you."

Have you stayed in touch with Alla Korot (ex-Jenna; also ex-Allie Doyle, AMC)?

Yes. A few times over the years. She's a good girl and she looks great. She deserves the world. She's done some stuff I've seen and she's a talented woman.

You'd gone back to AW for a few visits. How was that?

The best time in my life. It was like a reunion. I remember being nervous when I'd go back. I was running through New York and they had me come back on as Dean. It was like going back to see your family. Dean didn't make it to Frankie's funeral, though. I guess he was still touring.

What was your reaction when you heard AW had been canceled?

People love to be the bearer of bad news, so I got a few calls about the cancellation. It was a death... very sad. I called and spoke to the producers when I heard.

Would you have liked to go back for one last visit?

Yes. But I was working and there would have been no way. I didn't even see the last show. Did the town blow up?

Cass and Lila got married.

No way.

Way. Frankie appeared as a ghost and gave her blessing.

Frankie was a ghost? Maybe that's why it went off the air.

Carl came back from the dead and reunited with Rachel. And everyone danced [to try to calm] a gorilla who had kidnapped Cass.

That's better than the turkey-baster story on Sunset Beach.