The First Lady of Daytime Television, the daughter of Jeanette and Victor Lucci was born on December 23, 1948 in Scarsdale
, New York
. After graduating from Garden City High School
in 1964, where she was a cheerleader, she moved on to Marymount College
, New York. She married Helmut Huber in 1969 after meeting him while engaged to another man, and the very next year, while still in college, was chosen to play the role of Erica Kane on a new ABC soap opera, "All My Children
Her character, Erica Kane, is a manipulative seductress everyone loves to hate. Erica has, at various points in her life, survived a plane crash, gone undercover as a nun, been kidnapped, and piloted a helicopter in an plot to spring her lover from prison. Under normal circumstances, however, she prefers to be a career-oriented former supermodel now running her own magazine publishing house. And, because of her numerous marriages, her full name is now Erica Kane Martin Brent Cudahy Chandler Montgomery Montgomery Chandler Marick Marick. She may be the only soap opera character with a song written about her (Urge Overkill's creatively titled "Erica Kane").
The 5'3", brown-haired, brown-eyed actress has become the most recognizable soap opera star in the world, partly because of the strength of her character, and partly because of her inability to win a Daytime Emmy. While Lucci had won a number of other less prestigious awards, she had never won a Daytime Emmy, despite the absurd number of nominations she had received. It had become something of a joke, and a selling point for whichever network happened to be broadcasting the Daytime Emmys: "Will this be the year?"
Lucci had been nominated for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series 18 times (1978, 1981-1993, 1995-1998), so when she was awarded the nineteenth nomination in 1999, it came as no big surprise. After opening the envelope, actor Shemar Moore shouted "THE STREAK IS OVER!" Lucci was genuinely stunned -- she didn't understand what streak Moore was talking about, and had to ask several people if she had actually won. She received a three minute standing ovation from the audience at Madison Square Garden.
Aside from he role as Erica Kane, Lucci also appeared on the nighttime soap "Dallas", several TV movies, and ad campaigns for Sweet N' Low, Ford, and Microsoft's WebTV before starring on Broadway in "Annie Get Your Gun", taking over the role in 1999 while Bernadette Peters was on vacation. One of the two remaining original cast members of All My Children, Lucci has her own fragrance ("La Lucci") and cosmetics line, and works with a number of charity organizations, such as the March Of Dimes and the Little Flowers Children's Services of New York.
She and her husband Helmut remain married and have two children, Liza and Andreas. Liza has followed in her mother's footsteps, portraying Gwen Hotchkiss on the soap opera "Passions" in 1999 and 2000.