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I remember the audition process took a long time, and so after two weeks I had kind of giving up and thought that they had chosen somebody else. And then I just got the call from my agent and I jumped from my bed, to my floor, to my bed, to my floor, and just ran around my room for about ten minutes screaming and I was so ecstatic I just couldn't believe that this is happening.
I'm Julianna Mauriello and I'm from Pleasantville, NY
I remember being 5 years old and I had seen a performance of My Fair Lady in my town. And I remember being in my room and just singing all the songs and my mom coming in and she was just like "wow you're just a natural at this" and I told her (I think I told her when I was 5) I said "I wanna be on broadway mom", and we decided together that if we were really serious about this and this is something that I really wanted to do that we had to go into the city and so I got an agent and she sent me on an audition and I booked a show. That was the first show I did, Oklahoma!, and I was ten years old and I was performing in New york every night, 8 shows a week, and then suddenly I was kinda living out this childhood dream.
While I was in my second show on Broadway, which was Gypsy, I auditioned for LazyTown and at the time I knew very little about it but I knew that it was filming in Iceland, it was a kids show and I had my audition like any normal audition and they eventually made their decision and then within a month I was packing up my apartment with my mom and we were moving to Iceland.
I remember arriving. It was snowing and we got to Keflavik airport and there's all these lava fields and so we got in a taxi and I turned to my mom when I said "it looks like we're on the moon." I was in shock, and then arriving to the set. It was this big warehouse full of people, full of these huge set. I was just in awe, I think of the size of it and meeting all of these people who had become a really big part of my life. I just don't think I was expecting such a big change and it really was a big change for me.
LazyTown is a children's show. It was shown on Nickelodeon Jr. and Noggin and plenty of other countries around the world, but in terms of what this show is about, it's just about this small town where there is a cast of funny quirky characters and I got to play a young girl named Stephanie who is the Mayor's niece in the town. She is this fun, energetic little girl who loves to dance and loves to sing - with my pink wig and my pink dress - and she's a very bubbly character.
I would have to say that I got closest with the woman who was my make-up artist, her name is Hanna Maja. We spent a lot of time together because every morning I had an hour of make-up and hair and she had this fun idea in the beginning that she would teach me Icelandic and so every morning as I was getting my make-up done she would teach me different things in Icelandic.
I remember the first thing I ever learned was to sing ' The Itsy Bitsy Spider' in Icelandic, and then she would just teach me words that were helpful on set, and then it just kinda spread to just learning the language. So that was a really fun way for us to kinda bond.
So we finished filming the first season and I got to go home for I think about a year and a half or so. They decided to go back and to film a second season. So I went back to Iceland at the end of 9th grade into 10th grade, which was a different experience. I was not as young and I wasnt quite as willing to be playing this very young character at that point. I was a teenager and I didn't really wanted to be stucked in this very young, always optimistic, always happy, bubbly little character that I was playing.
It's definately shocking to think that people know who I am but they don't know me but they still would want to know me, or would want to sent out a message to me. So like seeing the video's on YouTube or getting fan-mail, it's a little bit crazy to think of but I try to ignore that kind of weird videos and the weird letters and then just focus on the fans who the show is made for, the kids, and what it means to them.
I'm here at Middlebury and I am a psychology major but I have a dance minor. I wanted something outside the performing arts world and I had friends who were so motivated and just so driven and I noticed that it wasn't everything for me anymore. It was important to me but it wasn't defining me.
And so college was a change where I could kind of separate myself from that and go and explore other things that I hadn't had a change to earlier, and see if this was really what I wanted. I found that.. I think I'm actually kind of happier and so I guess I made the right decision.
I like looking back at myself when I was a lot younger when I was that little kid just kind of singing and dancing, and having this dream and somehow I was, I don't know, motivated enough.. fearless enough to really take it on and to really persue it.
It's been a long time probably since I jumped up and down on my bed, maybe I should.
Produced by Christopher De La Cruz
Photography by Mahnaz Rezaie
Transcript by Chris (Stingy) & LazyPooky
for Getlazy Forums