Interview With Actress Shay Thorsen, “All Of My Heart: Inn Love”

By Ruth on October 7, 2017 in Interview, movie, television
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When I profess that I adore young actors, I am completely in earnest. And it seems like the ones that the Hallmark network hires are always the crème de la crème. Whether they appear in background scenes, have a line or two, or are essentially the junior leads, I am consistently impressed with their competence as well as their humility. I realize their parents are quite often the reason they are well grounded, and when I noticed Shay Thorsen in the cast list for the sequel to one of my all-time favorite Hallmark films, All of My Heart, I immediately contacted her for an interview. Thus, I am immensely honored to share our recent chat with all of my fantastic readers!

RH:  So nice that we could chat today, Shay. How old are you now?

ST: I was eleven when I filmed All Of My Heart: Inn Love, but I’m twelve now.

How did you get started in acting?

I started when I was about four, but then we moved to Hawaii, and we lived there for about seven years. Then we came back to Canada, and I started acting classes ’cause it was always something I had been interested in besides being something fun to do. Acting became my passion and I love doing it.

Wow! So why did you go from Vancouver to Hawaii?

Well, I couldn’t get into the kindergarten I wanted to go to here in Vancouver. So that took us to Hawaii.

Oh my goodness! I’m thinking, “Why did you come back from Hawaii?” 

I know what you mean. It’s because we’re not Americans. That’s why we had to come back to Vancouver. As my mom would say, “It’s complicated.”

That’s what I was thinking. I have enough Canadian actor friends who try to come to the U.S., and it can be a very long, hard process. Did you happen to do any acting while in Hawaii?

No, because again we’re not Americans. You can only do American acting if you’re American and Canadian acting if you’re Canadian.

Again, that’s what I thought. When you get older, there are ways, but even those can be rather time-consuming and involved. {pause} Back to your career, Shay, what was your first acting credit?

I think the first was an Audi commercial.

That makes sense. A lot of people start out with commercials, especially kids.  What was your first official role in TV or movies?

All of My Heart 2 was the first. But I also was a singer in the TV show Timeless. It was an on-screen role with a group of kids. It was on the Hindenberg episode, which I think was the pilot.

Yes, that would have been the pilot! I remember that episode. And with All of My Heart 2, is that your first speaking role?

Yes, it is.

How did you get this role in All of My Heart 2?

I just had a normal audition for the part and I got it.

What can you tell us about your character in this movie?

I play the daughter of Brian’s ex-boss from where he had worked before.

Are you aware of all the buzz about this movie and how hard the fans worked to get this sequel? There’s a whole group of fans who have been asking for a sequel for two years, so this is a big movie!

No, I didn’t know! Wow, that is awesome!

Did you get to have any scenes with Brennan Elliott or Lacey Chabert?

Yes, I had scenes with both of them.

Did you enjoy getting to work with them?

Of course, I did! It was the most amazing day of my life! I loved it so much.

Any special behind-the-scenes moments you can share from filming?

Yeah, when I was on set, Lacey’s daughter was turning one year old. It was so awesome to be there for that. Her daughter is so adorable.

Do you know if there are any other kids involved in the movie?

As far as I know, I’m the only kid in the movie.

Are you planning on doing any tweeting during the premiere of the film?

I am not certain. It might happen. I would love for us to come across the border so we can see the movie, but I’m not sure how that will all work.  I’ve also done some featured background work on the premiere of season four of When Calls the Heart, and though we tried, we weren’t able to watch that one. It’s always hard to find the Hallmark Channel here in Canada since we don’t really have the channel up here. My mom and I are kind of new to the social media thing. My mom is the one who takes care of all that, and she tries to keep up, but it’s kinda hard sometimes.

Shay, do you have any other upcoming works that you can mention?

At the moment, no. I am a background actor for When Calls the Heart again this upcoming season.  If you look at the baseball picture with the kids, you might see me in the front on the left next to Erin Krakow.  I don’t have any lines, but I’m there. If you keep an eye out for me, you might see me as I’m in several scenes.

What’s it like to be on that set?

Oh, it’s a lot of fun. They’re really nice and welcoming on that set. The clothing is a lot of fun, and I love the horses. And the set is on a farm, so that’s just great.

Do you go to a regular school?

Yes, I go to a public school.

When you’ve been on set, have you had to work with a tutor?

No, I haven’t. Not yet.

You’ve been able to keep up with school and acting so far?

Yes, and I always bring my work with me to set. I’m doing pretty good with my grades. My teacher is very supportive and doesn’t have a problem with it. My mom expects me to keep my grades up, and that helps too. She says that’s part of the deal. She says she doesn’t mind as long as I keep up with my work whether I’m on set, on vacation or at school.

It’s interesting. Most of the kids I talk to who are actors seem to be really good students, and you  are definitely no exception.

I’ve heard my mom say that she thinks kids who act have to have a focus. You have to remember lines and really be focused on that as well as doing your schoolwork.

I think that’s true. And they also have supportive parents just like your mom is, Shay. And it’s such a joy to get to talk with a positive young lady like you because all too often, we hear all the negative things about child actors. 

I’m too busy to get involved in all that wrong stuff. I’m definitely not going to be like those negative teenage actors and pop stars. I have one or two activities every single day after school. She started me out young, and she says she thinks that’s the key. I’m not a teenager yet, but I know I’m going to be too busy doing activities and hobbies to have time to get into trouble.

In addition to acting, what other activities do you do?

I do competitive cheerleading, dance, swimming, guitar, singing, and musical theater.

My, you are a busy young lady. While it sounds like your mom keeps you busy, what do you like to do in your free time?

I like to write stories; I think that’s lots of fun. And I love to travel as well. It’s a really fun thing my mom and I do together.

Where have you traveled?

I’ve been to Mexico twice. We went to Australia for three months. Then we stayed in Bali for a month. And Hawaii, of course. I think this winter we’re going to New York.

My goodness, not even thirteen and you’re already a world traveler! And since you like to write, maybe one day you’ll be a screenwriter. Or you’ll publish a book. You never know. 

I hope so.

It sounds like you’re off to a good start. It sounds like you’re really well-rounded; you’re not doing just one thing. You have a variety of interests, and with your mom’s help, you’re getting experience doing a lot of different things. It sounds like your mom’s got you on the right path. So glad I got to talk to you today, Shay. And thanks to your mom as well.

Thank you for reaching out, Ruth. This is my first interview, and I’m very excited about All Of My Heart 2!

What strikes me the most about Shay is her maturity and basic understanding of the entertainment industry. While I know I’m often amazed by these attributes in many of the young people I interview, Shay’s experience is not vast in comparison. Notwithstanding, her grasp of what is expected and required of her far supersedes a cursory comprehension. I believe it goes back to that word that her mom mentioned to her–focus. There is no doubt in my mind that Shay possesses this quality in spades. Furthermore, her natural enthusiasm is incredibly infectious, which only confirms to me that because of her mom’s guidance, Shay is fully engaged in pursuing activities and passions that resonate with her on a particularly deep level. While her experience may not be as extensive as some of her peers, her professionalism and skill are unquestionably as inherent as these other young performers.

I urge you with every fiber of my being to tune into All of My Heart: Inn Love tonight as it premieres on the Hallmark Channel. This is a film that reverberates with me since I was an early promoter of a sequel to the phenomenal first film which many of us hope becomes a series of films or perchance even a weekly TV series! Regardless, be sure to keep an eagle eye out for the captivating and magnificent Shay. I am rather convinced this is only the beginning of more substantial works for this lovely young actress who brings unrivaled skill as well as a stunning smile to this sequel which I believe will propel her career to skyrocketing heights!

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About the Author

RuthView all posts by Ruth
43-year-old single mother of an active 14-year-old girl Born in Tacoma, WA; lives in Yelm, WA Entertainment Writer Available For Interviews and Reviews Substitute Teacher

2 Comments

  1. denise October 8, 2017 Reply

    Quite an accomplished young lady.

    • Author
      Ruth October 9, 2017 Reply

      I couldn’t agree more Denise!

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