EXCLUSIVE! Meet Kayden Muller-Janssen from Disney Channel's Villains of Valley View
This summer, spot Kayden Muller-Janssen as next-door neighbor Hartley on Disney Channel's new series Villains of Valley View. When she isn't acting, this multi-talented teen is hard at work on her music career and more. We sat down with Kayden to talk all things acting, music, following your dreams and making new friends.
On how she got her start performing:
"It all started with me kind of being the oddball of my family. My whole family rides horses professionally—but I was the artistic one who wanted to sing and act. I went to an arts school and started doing theater, got an agent and went out auditioning. With music, I've always had a love for singing. I remember my mom playing the Mulan soundtrack in her car. I was just belting 'Reflection' and [my family] figured out 'Hey, OK, she kind of has a voice.'"
On auditioning for Disney Channel:
"It happened so fast. I've auditioned for Disney Channel since the beginning of my acting career. [I thought] 'I'm probably not what they're looking for, I'm 19, I'm too old.' But I gave it my best shot. Then, a couple weeks later, I got a callback."
On her Villans of Valley View character, Hartley:
"Hartley reminds me of my younger self. Growing up and going through middle school, I was always the bubbly happy girl who would like to wear bright colors and do cool hairstyles. I really took that when it came to playing Hartley. Throughout the season, she learns a lot from the Maddens and I think she also teaches the Maddens a lot as well."
On her friendship with co-star Isabella Pappas:
"We instantly connected and we're best friends. It's so funny because Izzy and me have so much chemistry in real life. I feel like you can really see that onscreen with [our characters] Amy and Hartley. We've been working on this show for the past seven months, so we were spending a lot of time together and surprisingly Izzy and I never got into a fight. I never had such a positive and motivating relationship with somebody before."
On her two loves: acting and music:
"It's all in the same entertainment industry but at the same time, it definitely has some different aspects. Musically, I have a lot more control over my image and my sound. With acting, you have this character to play and you have certain clothes and you know what this person is like. You still have control over how you're going to play that character, but it's a little bit more boxed in. I honestly love both equally."
On her advice for other girls who want to follow their dreams:
"If it's something that you are extremely passionate about or are going to be really happy doing, go for it. There's going to be a lot of no after no and you just have to keep going. Really try to stay yourself and don't try to copy that wave. There's always going to be people who have opinions or negative stuff [to say] about anything. But if you are happy with your work and what you're doing, and you're passionate about it, that's all that matters."
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