by Ryan Meehan
Katherine Bailess is an incredibly talented actress, singer and dancer hailing from Vicksburg, Mississippi and is the very definition of a true southern belle. She recently wrapped filming the new VH1 TV Series ‘Hit the Floor’ as Kyle, a series regular and one of the elite Los Angeles ‘Devil Girl’ Professional Basketball Dancers. The show (created by James LaRosa) and also starring Charlotte Ross and Dean Cain, premiered Memorial Weekend, 2013. Katherine is no stranger to television or film as she has recurred on a number of TV shows including Gilmore Girls, One Tree Hill, The Loop and Sordid Lives. She has also appeared on shows like NCIS as well as numerous other independent films including, “Below the Beltway”, “Elle: A Modern Cinderella Tale”, “Stone Markers” and “2 Dead 2 Kill.” On occasion, she is also known to step in as a co-host for “Afterbuzz TV” alongside Maria Menounos. Never one to neglect her Southern roots, Katherine still makes time so she can continue to work on her Country music as both a singer and songwriter, and she’s our guest today in 5 questions.
RM: What percentage of people that recognize you do so from your work on “One Tree Hill” and “Gilmore Girls”?
KB: I’d say most people recognize me more from my role on “One Tree Hill” because I had a bigger role.
RM: Was dance really the first thing that attracted you to the entertainment industry? When did you actually begin acting and getting paid for it?
KB: Yes, dance was my first passion. I started dancing professionally on stage in Mississippi when I was 11 years old. I got a dance scholarship to Marymount Manhattan College in NYC and that’s when I fell into the acting world. I did a few Musical Theatre shows at school and was discovered by a manager. I then studied at the William Esper Acting Studio and in the meantime started auditioning for TV and Film. My first paid acting job was my recurring role on the ABC Soap “One Life to Live.” I soon moved to Los Angeles and booked 2 movies pretty much the day I stepped into LA. Now that never happens 🙂 My first two films were “Bring It On Again” and “From Justin to Kelly.” But J2K was my breakout role. Starring beside Kelly Clarkson, Justin Guarini and Anika Noni Rose.
RM: You were featured in the YouTube Comedy series “Sh%t Southern Women Say”…Have you grown out of your Mississippi accent at all having lived in Los Angeles for some time now? Can you still turn it on like a switch when you need to?
KB: That’s funny that you ask about my accent. I actually spent a lot of time and money trying to lose my accent in NYC and LA but most of the roles that I have gotten have been Southern. And if they weren’t Southern when I auditioned, then the show runner or writers usually change the character to be Southern because they like my accent so much. That’s what happened on “Hit the Floor” and it has definitely made the character!
RM: What did you learn most from your work on the recent VH1 show “Hit the Floor”? What was that whole experience like for you overall?
KB: I learned that anything is possible! Everything I’ve ever worked for or wanted in my career is happening. I get to be funny, sexy, and dance all in one show. The experience has been a life changer. I will never doubt what I can and cannot do in this business. I’ve stayed focus in my career and it finally has paid off. I love each and every one of my cast mates as well as the show runner, James LaRosa, all the writers, producers, hair/makeup, choreographers, dancers…we are one big family!
RM: How do you maintain such a flawless physique? What’s your workout routine like?
KB: Wow! Thank you for the sweet compliment 🙂 I have to say that I have been athletic my whole life. I’ve been a dancer since I was 4, was a competing gymnast for years, an avid runner, and have been doing Pilates for 13 years. I even got my Pilates certification a few years ago because I wanted to teach on the side. But I will admit that I am probably in the best shape of my life from ‘Hit the Floor.” I have never danced like this in my whole life. It is hard but rewarding at the same time. Michael Rooney (our choreographer) doesn’t play around.
RM: With regards to your career, if there was one thing that you could go back and do differently – What would that be and why?
KB: Hmmmm….. good question. I would tell my younger self to have no fear. I think fear is the one thing that holds us back. Be yourself, follow YOUR instincts and take control of your career because no one is gonna do it for you.
RM: What’s up next for Katherine Bailess in the remainder of 2013? Anything big in the works that we should know about?
KB: I actually just finished an 8 week run of a play called “The Boomerang Effect” that I came back to reprise my role. There’s nothing like live theatre! And now since I have some time off before filming I am going to concentrate on my music career that I put on hold for a bit to concentrate on “Hit The Floor.” I will also be filming another episode of “Sh%t Southern Women Say” very soon. So be on the lookout to laugh!
Official Website: http://www.katherinebailess.com/
Katherine on Twitter: https://twitter.com/KatBailess
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