This is the first in OK!’s series of up-close interviews with the lovely ladies of the NBC hit Deal or No Deal. Stay tuned to OKmagazine.com every week to learn more about your favorite glamour gals!

While the gorgeous Aubrie Lemon might be best known as #23 on Deal or No Deal, OK! learned that this musically gifted (she plays the harp!) Florida native has a lot more lurking behind that brilliant smile.

You do realize that you’ve got a perfect name for TV?
Oh,
thank you! [Laughs] Everybody has a different take on my name, but it’s
okay, I respond to all of them. I definitely had the whole range of
nicknames when I was a kid. My grandfather called me Juice and my
friends called me everything from Lemonhead to Lemonade. It’s funny
because people ask, “Is that your real name?” And I think, “Oh, my god,
if I was going to pick a name I probably wouldn’t have chosen Lemon.”
But it turns out that because it’s so catchy and unique, people
remember it.

After a couple of seasons on such a hit show, do you get recognized now when you walk down the street?

It
depends on where I am. In L.A., nobody really cares because everybody’s
known for some TV show or movie or commercial or print ad. It’s when I
travel — to the Midwest particularly — that a lot of times, if I don’t
have my hair and makeup done, people will look at me and say, “Do I
know you? You look so familiar. Your voice is just so familiar.” They
just don’t assume they know me from TV. But it’s kind of funny how
people semi-recognize me.

So you don’t normally dress like you do on the show?
Oh, we do! I just came from the gym actually, in my rhinestones! [Laughs] A lot of people are surprised to learn that a lot of
the girls aren’t as high-maintenance as we may appear. Day to day I
don’t wear makeup or do my hair. We’re very low-key and normal.

What’s it like being so closely associated with the number 23? Do you ever feel like you’re on a sports team?
Following in Michael Jordan’s
footsteps is a tough act! I actually love my number because there
aren’t a lot of scandalous things associated with 23. Like, 13 gets a
bad rap, and 7 — the gambling numbers everybody has phobias about.
Earlier this season, we did an episode where the NFL made us jerseys
with our names on the back. It was so cool! Then they auctioned them
off and we never saw them again.

Do you enjoy all the costume changes on the show?
Well,
we generally wear one dress per episode, but occasionally we’ll do
something special. Like, there’s a contestant who’s a policeman in an
upcoming show, and halfway through we reenter all wearing police
uniforms. We wore mail-carrier costumes one time — we’ve got all kinds
of good stuff. We’ve got a bikini episode coming up!

Does that mean Howie will be in a Speedo?
No, no, no! [Laughs] Our producers tried to humor us by wearing sarongs that day over their jeans, but it wasn’t the same.

Speaking of your outfits, how in the world do you stand for so long in those heels?
Thankfully
for me, I’m in the back row, so I have less chance of falling down the
stairs and making a fool of myself. We’ve had some accidents, but I
have to say the girls fall very gracefully and the show’s not live so
we can just redo it!

So you wouldn’t air someone taking a plunge down the steps?
No!
We put together little blooper clips for our wrap party at the end of
each season — I think they even put them in slow motion!

What’s the least glamourous part of the job?
Standing
is a lot harder than I realized and smiling is a lot harder than I
realized. Those are two things everyone does without thinking, but when
you have to do them for extended periods of time it really makes you
realize, “Wow, I’ve got to work on these cheek muscles, and get them
back in shape for season 3!”

 

Do you ever get personally invested in the game?
Absolutely!
Especially if they’re playing for a school they want to give back to or
a charity they want to help out or their family is really in need.
You’re truly rooting for them to do well. And it’s inevitable that
somebody’s case is holding those high amounts. And if they’re going to
be taking it all the way to the end it’s inevitable that you’re going
to be opening some of those amounts. So yeah, it hurts. It hurts our
feelings when we open them because we feel a personal responsibility
with our case — “Oh, I’m sorry I had to give you this!”

Where did a girl from small-town Florida learn to play the harp?
Oh,
there’s a whole secret society of harpists out there! [Laughs] My
family, we used to go camping a lot and go to all these festivals, and
I saw a harpist playing a little folk harp and that’s what caught my
interest. I’d already had 8 years of piano behind me, and the harp is
just like a piano turned upright. I told my mom I wanted to take harp
lessons and we found a harp teacher, no problem, and that’s how it all
got started. You just don’t realize it’s an instrument that people
actually play. I love music and I think an instrument like that that’s
so unique and so intriguing – it was just, like, “Wow, why not? I can
do that.” So I did. And then I started playing professionally at
weddings and art shows before I moved to L.A., and then I moved here
and I got busy.

Where do you see yourself in five or 10 years?
It’s
so hard to say. When I first moved out here, it was just for fun and I
wasn’t thinking long term. I’ve been out here about five years now, and
each year I’ve said, “Just one more year, just one more year… I’m
going to have a little more fun and move back to the East Coast and
settle down and have a real job.” But each year that’s passed I’ve had
more success and established myself more. And now it would be silly for
me to leave in the middle of this amazing blessing that’s been given to
me. So, I’ve stopped putting timelines on anything. And that’s what I
love about my life — from day to day, each job I do — modeling, working
on Deal or No Deal — every day is different, and it’s exciting
and I never know what’s coming. I have a great life; I don’t know
what’s around the corner, but I’m enjoying it while it’s here.

Click HERE to check out OK!’s gallery of Aubrie pics!

Click HERE to take a peek at her personal Web site.

And don’t forget to tune in to Deal or No Deal Friday night at 8 p.m. on NBC.

Next week, OK! talks to Lucky #13, Leyla Milani

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