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GH’s Maurice Benard And Son Joshua On Channeling Anxiety Through Art

GH Maurice Benard and Joshua BenardGH Maurice Benard and Joshua Benard

May Day 2022 found the father/son team of General Hospital’s Maurice Benard and Joshua Benard on their third meet-up on the video podcast of State Of Mind discussing living with someone with mental health issues and channeling your emotions through the arts.

Maurice And Joshua Benard: Mental Health Is A Family Affair

When one person in the family unit suffers from a mental health issue, it will reverberate throughout the home and the relationships from within. Maurice Benard (Sonny Corinthos) touched upon the subject when he asked his son about his reaction to senior Benard’s anxiety and depression meltdown during the Covid 19 lockdown. His response spoke volumes about how children view their parents in such situations. “I didn’t believe you. I thought you were strong enough, and you would make it. You didn’t believe that.”

“I appreciate you saying I’m strong,” the host responded. “Your mom [Paula Benard] is the same way. But when you get to the point that I was during the pandemic, a person’s thoughts going through what I did, is so traumatic, in your thoughts, and chaotic that you truly believe that you can’t do this another hour. And someone who is not mentally ill doesn’t really understand what that is.”

Joshua Benard countered honestly. “I have had way worse moments in my life with you than that, but that was worse for you. But I think it is good to show that you are not scared to the other person. Even if you are, I don’t think you should show it.”

After further reflection, junior Benard described how his love of music and writing was a saving grace for him during that trying time. “A lot of that type of stuff, even though it wasn’t that traumatic for me, like it was for you, during that period with me, now that I write music.”

The budding actor and musician described how he channels his emotion through his music. “One of the songs that I wrote called Home, coming out soon, was what I wrote when you were going through that period. A lot of songs that I have that I think are great come from that. When I finish a song, write the last thing, that’s the greatest feeling in the world.”

The Proud Papa

The younger Benard taught himself to play classical piano and guitar beginning in 2018, graduating to writing music more recently. Benard asked his son, “What is the difference between the guitar and the piano? It is a different feeling.”

“It is a different love,” The young man shared. “Piano, to me, is how I express my whole emotions, like who I am when I play it. I cry when I play the piano sometimes. When you play the piano, there is just a feeling you get. And the guitar is the inner rock star that I want to be. Guitar brings out my voice, more than anything.”

He needled his dad in typical father/son wordplay. “I am getting my first tattoo of a guitar, by the way. I didn’t tell you that. I’m 18.”

To which Maurice responded, “Yeah, whatever,” rolling his eyes in typical parent fashion. He also took up acting, following his own muse, and his father couldn’t be more proud, calling him the “next James Dean.”

Young Benard has played a younger Sonny Corinthos on General Hospital and, more recently, the character of Adam opposite Eden McCoy’s Josslyn Jacks. With a mysterious HBO project due out this summer and some more time in Port Charles as Adam, his future looks bright, but acting comes with its own speed bumps. In Joshua Benard’s case, it’s auditioning that plagues him.

“I try to have a positive outlook with auditioning but auditioning just sucks.” He declared, “I have done like a hundred auditions and gotten only four or five, but that’s not the right way to look at it. I know that.”

“The way you should look at it is you are doing GH, and you have HBO coming, and that’s great,” Benard championed his son. “And if you don’t get any auditions for the next year, then so what? You’ve got two things coming out. Not many actors like auditions.”

Catch the whole episode to learn more about Joshua Benard, the family dynamics, his inspirations, working with McCoy, what his work ethic philosophy is, making music, and his upcoming projects. Stay through to the end and see his beautiful rendition of a Beatles classic. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram.

Follow Maurice Benard on Twitter, Instagram, or State of Mind. If you or someone in your family is suffering from mental health issues and you need help, contact NIMH.

General Hospital (GH) airs weekdays on ABC. Check your local listings for airtimes. For more about what’s coming up in Port Charles, check out all the latest that’s been posted on General Hospital spoilers, and for an in-depth look at the show’s history, click here.



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