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Louise Sorel

Louise Sorel
Don Rickles and Louise Sorel, 1971.jpg
Don Rickles and Louise Sorel in 1971
Louise Jacqueline Cohen

(1940-08-06) August 6, 1940 (age 81)
Years active1957–present

Louise Jacqueline Sorel (née Cohen, born August 6, 1940) is an American actress. She is perhaps best known for her role as Vivian Alamain in Days of Our Lives from 1992 to 2000, 2009 to 2011, 2017 to 2018, and 2020, Augusta Wainwright on Santa Barbara from 1984 to 1991, and Emily Tanner on Beacon Hill since 2014.

Early life

Sorel was born in Los Angeles, California, the daughter of a Hollywood producer father and an Egyptian mother who is a professional concert pianist.

Sorel received theatrical training at the Neighborhood Playhouse School of the Theatre in New York. She briefly attended the Institut Français, where she studied French. Sorel is Jewish. She began performing on stage when she was 15 years old.


Sorel's early career was on the stage; she spent several years on Broadway, playing roles in Take Her, She's Mine and Man and Boy. She appeared in stage productions of The Lion in Winter and The Sign in Sidney Brustein's Window.

Sorel's first feature film appearance was in the film The Party's Over (1965). She appeared in Plaza Suite (1971), Night Gallery episode "Pickman's Model" (1971), B.S. I Love You (1971), Every Little Crook and Nanny (1972), The Return of Charlie Chan (1973), Airplane II: The Sequel (1982), Mazes and Monsters (1982), Where the Boys Are '84 (1984), and Crimes of Passion (1984) among others. She has made guest appearances on more than 50 prime time programs and TV movies, making a guest appearance on Star Trek (as "Rayna", in the episode "Requiem for Methuselah", which aired in 1969). She also portrayed Terry Waverly, the sister-in-law of Dr. Richard Kimble in an episode of The Fugitive in 1965.

She made other guest appearances on such programs as Bonanza (as Marie in the episode "The Strange One", 1965), Daniel Boone, The Virginian, Route 66, The Big Valley, The Fugitive, Search (as Magda Reiner, in "Live Men Tell Tales"), Vega$, Hart to Hart, Medical Center, Charlie's Angels, The Incredible Hulk, Hawaii Five-O, The Eddie Capra Mysteries, Knots Landing, and Sabrina the Teenage Witch, among others. She had a principal role on The Don Rickles Show. Sorel played Helena Varga, a young woman from a disadvantaged background whose photographic memory becomes valuable to a drug kingpin in the David L. Wolper television production Get Christie Love (1974), starring Teresa Graves. Sorel played Eleanor Greeley in the Magnum, P.I. episode "One More Summer" (1982).

Her first daytime dramatic role was as eccentric, meddlesome Augusta Wainwright on the NBC daytime drama Santa Barbara. She appeared on Santa Barbara from July 1984 to August 1986, then from November 1988 to May 1989, returning the following October. She remained until October 1991.

In between stints, she also spent a year appearing as strong-willed but decent District Attorney Judith Russell Sanders on the ABC soap opera One Life to Live, from August 1986 through November 1987. She played the villainous Vivian Alamain on the NBC daytime serial, Days of Our Lives from March 1992 until February 2000. Sorel's performance as Alamain garnered her five Soap Opera Digest Awards as "Outstanding Villainess" in 1994, "Outstanding Showstopper" in 1997 and again in 1999 as "Outstanding Scene Stealer".

In 2000, shortly after her dismissal from Days of Our Lives, Sorel briefly joined the cast of the Port Charles as fashion maven "Donatella Stewart" (a play on the names Donatella Versace and Martha Stewart). The role lasted for a month. In 2001, she had a brief role on another ABC soap opera All My Children as "Judge Kay Campobello" who blackmailed Adam Chandler into sleeping with her. She made a brief appearance on Passions as cannery worker Dort in 2004. In December 2009, she was invited to reprise her villainous role on Days of Our Lives.

In June 2011, Sorel was let go from Days of Our Lives along with many other actors to make room for the return of supercouple John and Marlena and several other characters. In 2014, Sorel played Emily Tanner in the soap opera web series Beacon Hill.

On December 29, 2017, Sorel returned to Days of Our Lives as Vivian. However, she was briefly replaced by Robin Strasser. On December 30, 2019, it was announced that Sorel would once again return to the role in 2020.



Year Award Category Work Result
1986 3rd Soap Opera Digest Award Outstanding Comic Relief Role on a Daytime Serial Santa Barbara Nominated
1986 3rd Soap Opera Digest Award Outstanding Actress in a Supporting Role on a Daytime Serial Santa Barbara Nominated
1993 9th Soap Opera Digest Award Outstanding Villain/Villainess Days of Our Lives Nominated
1994 10th Soap Opera Digest Award Outstanding Villain/Villainess Days of our Lives Won
1995 11th Soap Opera Digest Award Outstanding Female Scene Stealer Days of our Lives Won
1996 12th Soap Opera Digest Award Outstanding Actress in a Supporting Role Days of our Lives Won
1997 13th Soap Opera Digest Award Outstanding Female Showstopper Days of our Lives Won
1999 15th Soap Opera Digest Award Outstanding Female Scene Stealer Days of our Lives Won

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