–Ashley Argota currently stars on Nickelodeon’s hit show, “True Jackson, VP” as “Lulu.” We recently chatted with the talented singer/actress about her role on the show, her hobbies, favorite things and more. Read the interview below.
SO-M: How did you get started in acting?
Ashley Argota: My mom put me in acting classes when I was 5 years old because I was such a little character. I was always doing accents and being all crazy and stuff. She figured acting would be good for me and I loved it so much that I never stopped.
SO-M: How would you describe your character on “True Jackson, VP”?
AA: Lulu is True’s best friend and she is really innocent. She is always happy and optimistic about life. She can be very ditzy sometimes.
SO-M: Are you like her at all?
AA: Kind of. Lulu is basically me when I’m hyper. But I’m not ditzy and distracted like she is. I’m very focused.
SO-M: What would you like to see happen with Lulu in Season 2?
AA: I would really like to see her sing on the show at some point because I sing. I think that would be fun. I want to do a musical episode.
SO-M: What kind of musical would you want it to be?
AA: We’re all thinking like the “Wizard of Oz.” It was Danielle Bisutti’s idea, who plays Amanda on the show. Max (Greg Proops) could be Oz and I could be Glenda the Good Witch and Amanda could be the Wicked Witch and all that stuff.
SO-M: Do you have a favorite episode that you’ve filmed so far?
AA: I do. It’s our dance episode. I actually had to do a dance with the guy on the show. We had to do a waltz and it took about a week to learn it. It was a lot of fun.
SO-M: Does the cast get along off set as well as on set?
AA: Yes we do. We’re like family. It’s awesome, I love the cast so much.
SO-M: How would you describe your costars?
AA: Keke Palmer is funny. She makes me laugh nonstop. She’s so much fun and I always say, there’s never a dull moment around her.
Matt [Shively] is like my big brother. He’s awesome.
Danielle [Bisutti] is pretty. She’s so pretty and a fantastic actress. She’s always practicing her lines. When she’s not in a scene, she’ll be on a different part of set practicing.
Ron [Butler] is really cool. He keeps to himself mostly.
Robbie [Amell], who is a series regular this season, is the nicest guy. He’s so cool and we love him. We’re really happy he’s a regular this year.
Greg Proops is also just hysterical. He’s a standup comic so he is always making us laugh no matter what.
SO-M: You said earlier that you get up at 4:30am every day. What’s a typical work day like?
AA: I do get up at 4:30am. I have to be at work by 8am. We do 3 hours of school and then we go down to rehearse and have run throughs. On Thursdays we pre-shoot scenes that are on a different stage or aren’t in front of the audience. Then on Fridays we have a live audience taping.
SO-M: Is it intimidating filming in front of a live audience?
AA: I love filming in front of an audience actually. I think it brings out the best in all of us. We really enjoy filming in front of them.
SO-M: You’ve done TV, would you like to do more film work?
AA: I did one film called “School’ed” a long time ago, but I would love to get into film down the road.
SO-M: If you could have anyone guest star on the show, who would it be?
AA: David Cook. I’d love to have him guest star on the show because he’s one of my favorite singers. And also Daniel Davis from “The Nanny.” I’ve been watching “The Nanny” nonstop lately because it’s been on Nick at Nite so much and Daniel Davis is “Niles” and the funniest guy. I would love to have him guest star one day.
SO-M: If you could guest star on another show, what would it be?
AA: If “The Nanny” was still running, I’d say that. I’d say “Grey’s Anatomy” because that’s my favorite show.
SO-M: You mentioned you also sing. Do you have any plans for an album?
AA: I actually have an album out on iTunes right now. [Note: You can purchase it HERE] I’m not with a label or anything. I’m recording more songs now and writing and learning how to play the guitar. It’s really fun. So hopefully I’ll be coming out with another album really soon.
SO-M: How would you describe your style of music?
AA: My style is pop. I have a lot of pop and ballads on my CD.
SO-M: Do you prefer acting or singing? Is one harder than the other?
AA: That’s a tough one. Singing always came first. I started singing when I was 2 and acting when I was 5. I love both of them so much so I can’t pick.
SO-M: Besides the new season of “True,” do you have any other upcoming projects?
AA: Just more writing and recording for now. We’ll see what happens.
SO-M: What are your hobbies besides singing and acting?
AA: I love to read. Reading is kind of what I do when I’m not working or doing schoolwork. I like going to the movies and chilling at home. I’m a pretty boring person I guess you could say. [laughs]
SO-M: Do you have a favorite song right now?
AA: “You Belong With Me” by Taylor Swift.
SO-M: Have you ever had a crazy fan encounter?
AA: I had a lot of them when I was on the Nickelodeon cruise. There was this girl, I was waiting for the elevator and this girl was coming down the stairs and she saw me. She fell down 3 steps. She completely forgot she was walking down stairs and she just like face planted then ran around the corner because she got really embarrassed. Then she came back around the corner peeking at me. It was really cute.
SO-M: She was ok though right? Not hurt?
AA: Yeah she was completely ok.
SO-M: What is something fans might be surprised to know about you?
AA: I have a back brace because I have scoliosis. I wear it under my clothes and you can’t even tell.
SO-M: Do you have a celebrity crush?
AA: I don’t actually. I get asked that a lot and I keep thinking about it but I don’t. It’s crazy. I get so focused on school and work that I don’t even have time to look.
SO-M: Favorite bands/singers?
AA: I love Paramore, the Fray and One Republic. My favorite singers are Celine Dion and Kelly Clarkson.
SO-M: Current obsession?
AA: My current obsession is my iPod, but that’s always been my obsession.
SO-M: What’s the best Halloween costume you’ve ever had?
AA: When I was in the Lion King, I dressed up as “Nafiki,” which was a mix between Nala and Rafiki. I had makeup half as Nala on my right side, so it was all tan and brown. And on my left side it was all Rafiki like yellow and blue and green. Crazy colors.
SO-M: Have you ever been mistaken for someone else?
AA: The girl from “Minutemen” on Disney. [Kara Krane]
SO-M: What’s your favorite subject in school?
AA: I love English. I’ve always loved to read and write. Math is my least favorite.
SO-M: Did you go to public school as well, or have you always been homeschooled?
AA: I went to public school for elementary school, kindergarten through 6th grade. 7th grade until now, my Senior year, I’ve been homeschooled. I kind of miss public school. There’s some aspects of it I miss. I’ll be talking to my friends and they’re like “Oh I switched classes and then I went to my locker.” I’m like, I’ve never had a locker and I don’t switch classes. When I want to switch classes I literally just pull my book out of my desk and there it is. But I don’t feel like I’m missing out on much. Technically Keke [Palmer] is in my class and we have a really great teacher. This season we are going back to school on the show, so I kind of get that experience. Keke’s birthday party was actually a prom so I technically went to prom.
SO-M: What was your favorite part about the Nickelodeon Cruise this summer?
AA: Everything oh my gosh. The boat was ridiculously huge. It was 15 floors and they had a Johnny Rockets which was a big plus for me because I love it. They had a cafe and foods from every single country you could think of. The islands we went to were so beautiful. There was crystal clear water and it was really humid, but I just ignored that. [laughs] I went kayaking and snorkeling and parasailing. I got sick parasailing, but that’s okay because it was an experience anyway and I had a lot of fun. I was able to bring my best friend with me so I had a great time.
SO-M: What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?
AA: Never give up because this business is really hard and there’s a lot of rejection. It might get your hopes down, but never give up.
SO-M: Do you have a message for the fans?
AA: Dreams do come true and I’m living proof. “True Jackson, VP” was supposed to be my last audition ever for anything. I was going to quit show business completely and my dream ended up coming true. So they do come true.
SO-M: Where can people find you online?
AA: My website is www.ashleyargota.com and I have a music myspace which is myspace.com/ashleyargota. Then I have a fan facebook. I have a youtube channel also which is youtube.com/ashargota. I post videos there all the time. Just to make it clear though, I DO NOT have a twitter. There are a bunch of people faking me on there, but I don’t have one. I haven’t given in and I know I’m not going to have time to update it. I’m thinking about getting it, but it’s not happening right now.