ASPIRING actor Kelsey Morgan Arnold spoke to Close-up Culture about her appearance on Netflix show Girlboss, life in L.A, staying motivated and much more.
Q: Last year you had such a fun role in Netflix Original Girlboss. How did this opportunity arise and what did it mean to you to be a part of this show?
A: IT truly was a fun role! I mean, I got to say, “I’m just pooping!” Also, having a full camera crew filming you while you’re on the toilet is pretty funny in itself.
How I landed the audition in the first place was pretty cool. I had just signed with my first agent over at Shauntiel Lindsey Talent Agency and within a week or two I was sent the audition. I am appreciative of the casting directors Kerry Barden and Paul Schnee for bringing me in. When I was in the audition room I just let loose and had fun, went a little over the top and then they gave me direction, did a couple takes and that was that.
I feel like being able to take direction as an actor truly shows your professionalism in the room, it shows that you will be able to do the same on set which makes everyone’s job easier.
Landing the actual role meant everything to me because it made my two worlds collide. I went to school for fashion merchandising and the Girlboss is based of a fashion icon, Nasty Gal. While on set the feeling I had made me realise that acting is what I’m meant to do – it is my calling!
Q: How was the experience of working on the show and with people like Kay Cannon (writer of Pitch Perfect) and Brit Robertson?
A: WORKING with Kay Cannon was an awesome experience. I showed up wearing overalls and she had overalls on as well and her and I had a little joking moment about it. While shooting my scenes she was all hands on deck helping out the director of that episode, putting their two visions together. The best way to describe her is a Girl Boss!
Britt Robertson is an exceptional actress and I feel proud to say I had the chance to work alongside her. She and I and the cast had lots of fun on our down time hanging out behind the scenes. The cast and crew made me feel more then welcome.
Q: Having been on one Netflix show, is there another that you dream of being a part of?
A: DEFINITLEY! It’s hard to pick just one to be honest. I’m going to say my top three are 13 Reasons Why, Lost In Space and Riverdale.
Q: I believe you have an intensive dance and improv background. How have those two crafts helped you as an actress?
A: I do. I’m a graduate from IOwest and I trained competitively in dance at Dance Dynamics and Visions Dance Academy growing up! Dancing competitively since a young child has helped me be more in tune with body as an instrument. Since I also did competitions, I learned to love the act of performing in front of many people through my artform which I would say bleeds into my desire to tell stories through acting. The love has only grown.
Improv training has helped me grow as an actress immensely. You are taught to think on your feet, to really listen to what was just said to you and comedic timing. All which is extremely important in an acting career.
Q: Why did you decide to pursue a career in acting? What do you love about performing?
A: WHEN I was a kid, I started my acting journey, my first big role was in an elementary school play, The Grinch. I know, big time, right? Back then I had an agent and a manager well before I even understood what those were. One day I told my mom how much I missed school whenever I had to go to auditions. Being the amazing mom that she is, she took me away from the acting world and I didn’t look back for almost a decade.
Fast-forward to senior year of high-school, I was taking a video production class and learned about all the aspects of making a film, including acting. I was hooked, that’s where the passion, the little fire that was always there tucked away inside started to burn again. I had rediscovered my passion for acting.
Ever since that first day of video class, every step I have made in my life has been from that fire inside of me. A deep-rooted passion is an interesting thing to have as a human. It lunges you forward, doesn’t let you give up, it’s so deep that the fear of failure isn’t even possible because it won’t let you stop until you succeed.
Performing and the love I have for it is packed inside a billion reasons. One of them is the wonderful opportunity to move the viewers, whether it be with laughter or tears. I have the need to tell stories with my mind, body and voice.
Q: Can you give us some insight into the life of an aspiring actress in LA and what your routine generally looks like?
A: I won’t sugar coat it. The life of an aspiring actress in LA has lots of ups and downs, lots of yes and no. That’s the beauty of it though, if you want it bad enough you will push for your career every day and take each no as a positive learning experience.
My routine is a mix of the actual creative training and marketing myself. I take acting class as Sal Romeo’s Friends and Artists Studio actor’s workout. To prepare for that throughout the week before class I break down my scene, learn my lines and read the whole play. All the things you would do on set.
Within the marketing side, it depends day by day but I could be writing personal letters to casting directors on postcards, updating my website, sending out emails on mail chimp to people in the industry of updates in my acting career, working on social media, networking and so on. I work on all the behind the scenes stuff so much because I believe that making it in this industry requires more than talent. You also need a great network around you, which includes savvy marketing, business skills and of course a great attitude.
Q: What keeps you motivated and inspires you as a performer?
A: WATCHING TV and film is one of the biggest things that keeps me motivated and inspired day by day. When I see a character on the screen that I know I would be right for it gives me that push and inspiration to continue training and working to get to the same level of the actress on the screen I’m watching.
Q: Can you tell us some of your hopes for the coming years?
A: MY hopes for the coming years are to be a series regular on a hit TV show or possibly a brand new one, some shows I’m interested in are, Shameless, 13 Reasons Why, The Walking Dead, Lost in Space, Riverdale, The Handmaid’s Tale. I would also like to sign with a top talent agency.
Q: Do you have any upcoming projects you can tell us about?
A: CURRENTLY, I’ll have new headshots going up across all my casting profiles, social media and website from Booked It Photography!