From elementary school plays to high school level competitions to the Governor’s Honor Program, seventeen-year-old Ariana Avila, called Ari by friends, was made for the stage. Known as a triple threat, Ari can sing, dance, and act, and can even do all three at the same time!! Ari had a lot to say, so I let her do most of the talking.
Question One: When did you realize acting was for you?
As a child, all my little elementary school friends had their “thing”: soccer, football, girl scouts, and so many other activities I thought were… boring. Well, I started doing little plays and musicals at the super tiny age of 6- my mom wanted me to go talk up a storm somewhere else ha ha. I have always thought about being an actress, but it was one of those dreams, you know? Like everyone my age, I wanted to be a ballerina, an astronaut, or a model- it’s those super unrealistic dreams that keep our imagination flowing as a child. Anyway, to get to your question, I found out that I seriously wanted to be an actress at around age 15. I got a huge scholarship to go to NYC Joffrey’s Musical Theatre workshop. It was three whole weeks. I think that experience sums up the entirety of how I want to become an actress.
Question Two: What projects have you been involved with since that beginning? Yes! As a dancer first, I’ve choreographed many dances for various groups: high schoolers, elementary, and adults. I love letting my creativity take control in those settings, it’s so much fun! At this moment, our IB Theatre Class at [Dalton High School] is working on our collaborative project. The title is “The Ghost Light,” an original play by our IB Theatre students- and I’m directing it! I have directed stuff before, but this will be the first time that what I direct will actually make it to the stage.
Question Three: What do you hope to accomplish in this field?
Honestly, I just want to inspire. I believe that inspiration is what drives the soul to accomplishment. With my aspiration of acting, I hope I can inspire others to do what they love, because that is essentially what I am doing.
Question Four: Any advice for your fellow aspiring actors?
Take that jump off the cliff. Not literally (please don’t), but in everything that you do- whether it’s acting, dancing, band, it doesn’t matter- do it to the fullest. Take that risk- this job is ALL about taking risks. Also, be yourself and know who you are. When you’re acting, you aren’t the character. You are the embodiment of the character, you are the “you-version” of the character, “What would you do as _____?” This technique has helped me so much in characterization because it comes out so much more natural and believable. Also listen. As actors, we often think that everything else is b.s. till our lines, which I’m definitely guilty of, but you have to LISTEN to others in the scene. Listen!
I’d like to thank Ari for her time and her responses. As a fellow actor. I couldn’t have said anything better myself. We at Art Infliction wish the IB theatre crew at DHS the best of luck with their production, as well as the fabulous Ms. Avila in all her future endeavors.