Being Silly (and Real!) With Allisyn Arm
As a child, Allisyn Ashley Arm was always fascinated with the acting business. Her parents noticed how captivated she was when seeing theater plays in
their hometown of Los Angeles, so at the tender age of 4 ½, they enrolled her in an acting class. Since then, she’s done stage, voice-overs, numerous TV commercials, and landed many great television roles (in such shows as Judging Amy, Still Standing, and Friends) and film roles (including Mr. Woodcock, King of California, and Meet Dave). From 2007 through 2010, Allisyn starred as Zora on Disney’s Sonny With A Chance and she went on to star as as a series regular on Disney’s hit show, So Random!
Allisyn Arm was one of BYOU Magazine’s earliest cover stars, gracing our cover for February/March 2012 and then again with her bestie, actress Audrey Whitby in June/July 2012. Allisyn and Audrey then continued their presence in BYOU Magazine with their Ask A&A column where together they offered girl-world advice about friendship from questions submitted by readers.
Here’s an excerpt from her exclusive interview with BYOU Magazine publisher Debra Gano:
Debra: What do you feel is the biggest challenge girls face today?
Allisyn: I think one of the biggest challenges for girls today is a new one: Cyber-bullying.
D: What advice would you offer girls about this?
A: If you see mean comments posted about you online, just realize someone is usually trying to be funny. It doesn’t make it ok, just easier to dismiss. Often that person doesn’t really mean what they wrote, and almost always they wouldn’t say it to you in person. If it’s really hurtful, or even threatening, then you need to tell a parent or teacher right away!
D: Lots of girls wonder how to get started in the entertainment industry – please tell us how you got started?
A: I started out with a few acting classes, then did a bunch of commercials. I filmed my first TV guest role when I was 6 years old. From there, I was lucky enough to get bigger and bigger parts. When I was 11 I got my big break as a series regular on Disney’s “Sonny With A Chance.”
But, just because I started acting at a very young age, doesn’t mean everyone does. If it’s something you love, you should go for it. I usually tell kids to start with acting classes, school plays, and local theatre. They all help build your resume, and make it easier to get an agent who will help you get bigger roles.
D: So you’ve been working as an actress for a long time! What has been one of your favorite roles so far and why?
A: Playing Zora on “Sonny With A Chance” and “So Random” is definitely my favorite role so far. On “Sonny,” I got to be the weird kid who hangs out in the vent system or an Egyptian sarcophagus. She has become my alter-ego, and it’s been fun developing her character. On “So Random,” I still get to play Zora, but we do almost all sketches (the TV term for skits). So I’m usually playing Zora playing a sketch character.
D: What are some of your favorite things to do when you’re not working?
A: My favorite non-job related thing to do is roller-skate! I also love hiking, creating art, writing, watching movies, and hanging out with friends.
D: I watch you perform and you crack me up – you are so funny! You do a great job of being silly on your show…does it come naturally to you? Do you like being silly?
A: Thanks! I love goofing around, especially with my cast-mates.
D: It seems like girls are ok with being silly when they are younger, but then as they get older, a lot of them feel they cannot let that natural silliness come out anymore for fear of what others will think – do you agree?
A: Yeah, I think some teens worry too much about how others see them. Even if you don’t want to act silly out in public, everyone should friends that they can goof around with.
D: Here at BYOU Magazine, we encourage silliness because we feel it allows a girl to truly be herself (and have fun!) without worrying about what others think. Do you think it’s good for girls to act silly now and then?
A: Yes! Being silly is fun, so it should make you happier.
D: You really seem like a girl who is comfortable with herself and who allows herself to be real and authentic. What do you think of the message to ‘be your own you’? Do you ever question or doubt yourself?
A: I love the message, “Be your own you!” They’re definitely words I live by. I also don’t think people should doubt themselves, we’re constantly learning and growing through our actions. For example, a lot of kids tell me they want to be actors. I encourage them to go for it, because if they never try new hobbies or interests, then they’ll never know if it’s something they’ll really enjoy.
D: Please share a final self-esteem tip for girls.
A: Express yourself, and don’t worry about what others think. Your clothes, make-up, hairstyles, etc., should be how you see yourself, not just an attempt to fit in.
Allisyn maintains a Vegan lifestyle, and is currently studying cinematography. Visit Allisyn’s website at www.allisynashleyarm.com.
Read more of Allisyn’s empowering advice for girls in her Ask A & A Column with Audrey Whitby!
Watch Allisyn and Audrey chat on San Diego Living!
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