At 11 years old, Ashlyn made her screen debut starring as the title lead role of Monday in the feature film MOON ROCK FOR MONDAY, directed by Kurt Martin and also starring George Pullar and Aaron Jeffery. Ashlyn has participated in several NIDA acting workshops and currently attends an esteemed performing arts school as well as the Young People’s Theatre.
FilmCentral Magazine recently caught up with Ashlyn to discuss her journey in the entertainment industry and here’s what went down:
Can you tell us more about yourself?
My name is Ashlyn Louden-Gamble, I am 13 years old and live in Port Stephens, NSW. I attend Hunter School of Performing Arts – HSPA which is a selective high school in Newcastle, NSW. Currently, I am in grade 8 and my electives are all drama-based – I am really enjoying improvisation and physical theatre.
In Port Stephens, we are surrounded by beautiful beaches and national parks. Where I live, we have kangaroos and koalas that regularly hang in our backyard and there is even an emu we see on my way to school. I just love nature!
How did you get started in the entertainment industry?
When I was about 8 years old (grade 2 at school), I started drama classes with O’Grady Drama School. My mum thought drama classes which was a great opportunity for me to overcome my shyness and unleash my creative side. My cousin and I were always making iMovie’s, which kept our family entertained, but the first play I ever did was the Pied Piper (with Helen O’Grady). I played a pirate and a rat! I had so much fun and discovered I loved acting.
In January 2019 I completed a NIDA screen acting course and soon after that I had representation and started auditioning for films… not long after my first audition, I was lucky to be cast as Monday in the feature film Moon Rock for Monday! It all happened very quickly.
What do you like most about acting?
I love the freedom to pretend – I enjoy acting as someone else, thinking and feeling what life is like for that character. I like that being a different character gives you the opportunity to look at life and the world in different ways.
What are some of the difficulties of the acting business?
I think many actors would say the auditioning process… there can be a lot of unknowns about the role, things outside of your control, and the “No’s” can be quite disappointing – especially when you have your heart set on a role. I just try to approach each audition as a creative outlet, show my take on the character and just have fun with the whole process! And keep my fingers and toes crossed for that “Yes.”
What’s challenging about bringing a script to life?
Initially, scripts are a lot of words and black print on pages of white paper. In bringing the script and your character to life, you must have a great imagination and be able to believe the story is your reality – the world it presents, the people in it, your experiences, your thoughts, and your feelings. I also think being able to empathise with your character in a way you think and feel like them is important. You cannot let your own feelings take over.
It is what I enjoy most about acting… you get to experience other worlds and life as someone else.
What do you do when you’re not filming?
School! But I am lucky to attend HSPA where I can study drama and join various ensemble groups and productions.
I also like to try new things and gain experience in as many courses as possible like drama, singing, accent training, aerial silks and I enjoy sports too and spending time with family and friends.
What has been the most memorable experience of your career so far?
Playing ‘Monday’ in MRFM was an amazing experience! I learned so much, met so many creative and talented people and travelled to new places. Coober Pedy is such a surreal place. One of the biggest highlights was attending Adelaide Film Festival where I got to watch MRFM for the first time – seeing it all come together was so exciting and seeing myself on the big screen was a little weird. But cool!
Who have been the most interesting people you’ve met so far?
There are so many talented and creative people in the industry. So much goes into making a film and so many passionate people are involved. Seeing people do what they love is interesting to me and what I hope for in my career.
If someone is going to make your life into a movie, who would play you?
It would have to be Me! Only I could be me. Plus, I am quite young still so not sure who else. But I would love the chance to work with Tom Holland, Julia Roberts, Dwayne Johnston, and Hugh Jackman.
What are your future plans? Inside your career or out of it.
I would definitely like to do more feature films and screen acting as well as finish school. I have also been thinking about working in either a pet shop, florist, or crystal store.
If there is anything else or interesting, you can tell us about yourself?
I am a massive foodie! I love watching cooking shows and I even follow a few food critics on Instagram (which I am recently new to).
Pho and bubble tea also happens to be my comfort foods.