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Mandy Musgrave Interview

Mandy Musgrave plays Ashley on South of Nowhere.
Courtesy of The N

By: Sindy

Mandy Musgrave is pretty new to Hollywood and she's already raising eyebrows for her role on South of Nowhere. We sit down to chat with this up-and-coming star.

Sindy: Why don't you start by telling me a little about how you got your start in acting?

Mandy Musgrave: I was pretty normal growing up. I did school plays, like most of my friends but my mom always said I seemed to enjoy it a little bit more than the others. I decided to try out and do drama club in middle school. The first play I went out for - I checked the call list and it said "usher" and I was like, "I didn't know there was a part for an usher?" I didn't realize I didn't get a part. I quit for three of four years and joined a drama class in high school. My drama teacher told me I had great potential and was really encouraging. In my sophomore year, I decided to come out to LA to see what it was like with the management I was with. I really liked it and decided to come out for pilot season. Once I did that, I just never went back. I'm still here!

Sindy: What is it that appeals to you about acting?

Mandy Musgrave: The fact that I can experience what it's like to be another person. Acting like something you're not is something that everybody does - but to do it for a living and get paid for it is a great thing. What's a better way to make money?

Sindy: For those who don't know, what is South of Nowhere about?

Mandy Musgrave: It's a teen drama about a family that moves from a small town to LA. They all change and go their separate ways. The daughter in the family ends up going to school and meeting this girl who has no labels. To her that means that she is somewhat bi-curious and the two girls end up starting a relationship. Throughout the second season, you get to see where that relationship takes them.

Sindy: You play a character in a lesbian relationship, which is pretty uncommon in youth-oriented shows. What appealed to you about the role?

Mandy Musgrave: When we first started, we had a bunch of angry Christians and other highly religious people because they think that we're going to be turning America gay. I mean, you can't turn someone gay! We're just trying to show people what's going on in everyday life. There are way more teen suicides among gay teenagers than among straight kids and that's terrible. People should be able to come out and say "this is who I am".

Sindy: What do you think that adults need to understand about teenagers today?

Mandy Musgrave: Well I wasn't a teenager that long ago - I just turned 20. Parents - or, at least, mine - knew everything that was going on. They were doing the same things when they were young. But we can't learn from their mistakes. We have to make our own. Mistakes are just lessons and we need to learn those lessons to become adults. I think it's hard for adults to watch us do that.

Sindy: You used to be on Days of Our Lives. What was that like?

Mandy Musgrave: It was really good. It was one of my first real experiences with acting. I used to think that soaps were so cheesy but they're so much work. It was so intimidating to walk into a show that's been around for decades as this little tiny newbie. I was the youngest one there. But everyone greeted me with open arms. They were such an organized program and it was so family-oriented. It taught me so much - how to memorize 13 pages in one day, how to cry on cue. It was really nice.

  • To find out about Mandy's future plans and how she keeps herself grounded in Hollywood, click here.
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