Today we’d like to introduce you to Emma Blyth.
Emma, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
Acting was something I fell into when I was very young. My mom always allowed me to dress up in her clothes and jewelry so I was always finding elaborate costumes and characters when I was very little and paraded them around the house. When I turned 12, I began really itching to start acting… After giving my parents a highly detailed powerpoint presentation they caved and allowed me to meet with an agency in Chicago. The agency asked me to read from a few sample commercial sides, I chose a Rogaine commercial because I felt it was “the meatiest role.” Despite my misunderstanding that this was clearly for a boy, they signed me. From there I began doing short independent films/commercials and truly fell in love with being on set.
At 18, it was settled in my mind. I was heading to Los Angeles. I got a job at Denny’s (shout out the moons over my hammy!) and saved every paycheck for my big move. At 19, I packed my bags and with the support of my grandma and mom made the cross country drive to LA. I can say despite the up and downs of auditioning in LA, I’ve never looked back. I instantly fell into a deep love with the west coast.
Since arriving I’ve been fortunate to find an incredible team. My manager, Mala is truly one of the most inspiring women I know and she has always had my back which has been an absolute gift. Especially in such a competitive industry.
I’ve been lucky in that I was able to begin booking commercials, a few television roles on Lifetime and just wrapped a feature in Tucson this past month. Every job I’ve booked has been a real blessing. I think it’s important to take time and express gratitude for the opportunities I’ve had because every time I’ve had a chance to work and do what I love is a beautiful thing.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
Truth be told, it hasn’t always been easy. It can be a lonely path sometimes. I miss my family and my midwestern friends but I’ve been fortunate to always have their support in pursuing a career in acting.
That aside, there will always be bumps in the road. I’ve booked and lost roles that I’ve really wanted due to my union status but I think looking at this as an opportunity to grow and get stronger has helped me keep a healthy perspective.
I’ve also faced challenges being a woman in a very “image” and “beauty-driven” industry. I’ve gained and lost weight thinking that it would help me work but honestly, listening to my body and loving myself as I am has made me a much stronger and more cast-able actor. I know that my body requires a certain amount of fuel in order to do its job properly. I’m also grateful to be pursuing this career in a time when people are shifting their mindset as to what beauty really is. Confidence, strength and integrity now outweigh the waifish wallflowers of decades’ past.
We’d love to hear more about your work and what you are currently focused on. What else should we know?
I believe what sets me apart is my empathy. When I was younger, I remember this overwhelming wave of emotions radiating from others around me. I was incredibly sensitive and vulnerable which lead me to be an easy target for middle school bullies.
That being said, my empathy and my compassion now has become my superpower. I think it’s so important to never judge the character you are playing. This person may be viciously malignant but I believe there is humanity in everyone. My pursuit will always be to find that sliver of empathy in all of us.
What has been the proudest moment of your career so far?
My proudest moment, I must say, was working with Phantom Theatre Projects Group. Although it’s not something many of my friends and family could come see it was deeply meaningful to me. PTPG is a group that focuses and specializes in education theater. First and foremost, bringing the brilliance of theater to younger new generations in a way that is accessible and discusses issues our youth experience in their day to day lives. I was fortunate to play the lead role in a play called “Through These Eyes” which focuses on the dangers of eating disorders. This was especially meaningful to me as someone who suffered from an eating disorder for several years during high school and into early adulthood. It was important for me to share my experiences, to leave my shame behind and to open up in hopes of helping someone who may be suffering themselves or have a loved one going through an eating disorder. At its core, I think this is the beauty and power of story-telling. To share our humanity, our experiences in order to break down barriers and to remind us all of our own humility. We are all human and no matter what you may be going through there is another person out there just like you. Perhaps sharing your story will help inspire someone else to chose a different path or to release the shame of their experience.
- Website: www.imdb.me/emmablyth