We met Long Island actress Esther Zynn while she was on a break from her TV show, “The Other Kingdom.” She stars as Princess Astral. We met her at the Nickelodeon offices in Manhattan.
Where did you grow up?
I grew up in Great Neck, Long Island. Now I live in New York City.
What was your childhood like and did you spend time acting?
I loved school and I was really into English and social studies, especially doing plays and drama. That’s actually how I got started doing acting. I would do school plays in middle school and I performed every chance I had.
When did you realize you wanted to be an actress?
Since I was like 5 years old. I always knew I wanted to be an actress. I don’t know, it was just something I always . . . I would watch TV and I knew that’s what I wanted to do.
Did you ever do musical theater as a kid?
Yeah, I did. I did “Wizard of Oz,” I did “Annie,” “High School Musical,” and a show called “Once Upon a Mattress.” I did a lot of musical theater.
What power does your character have that you would like to have?
One power is that Astral that can glimmer people, which means that she makes you forget the last 30 seconds of anything. So if you ever say something really embarrassing or you say something that just blurts out, she can just . . . blow fairy dust on them and then they forget the last 30 seconds. So that would be really awesome. I would really love to do that. It would help me with a lot of embarrassing moments that I have.
What is the greatest challenge while acting in “The Other Kingdom”?
We had a lot of special effects. A lot of stunts, some of which I got to do and some of which I didn’t. Mostly just like there are times, especially when I had to fly, my character had to fly in the other kingdoms. So they tied me up in a harness and did all these different tricks to make it look like I was actually flying. That was kind of a challenge. That and learning my lines. It was all work, but it was all really fun.
What is it like playing someone who’s like 14 years old?
It’s awesome. I think everything that Astral goes through anyone could relate to. Like fitting in and being different and starting something new for her like starting high school. I think everyone could relate to that no matter what age. I’m excited. I know I can totally relate to all those things personally.
How has your life changed since you became a professional actress?
It really hasn’t changed too much other than stuff like this where I get to talk to people about the show and film, but I definitely still feel like the same person. My friends are still my friends, and my family is still my family. That hasn’t really changed, but it’s cool to see what has changed. Being a role model I think is something I’m really excited about and I think it’s definitely different. I think it’s cool.
Is anything distracting on set?
Distracting? Everything. There’s so much happening on set, like there’s always people running around. They’re filming but behind the camera, there’s a whole crew of people. That in itself is kind of distracting. But then also the different props that we have. We had some really cool props like Astral’s crystal that she records her journey in. It’s a real crystal and it’s the coolest prop and just getting to play with all these different things is still kind of distracting.
What is it like watching yourself on TV?
It’s kind of weird. You know what though? It’s weird how normal it feels. That’s something I didn’t really expect.
In “The Other Kingdom,” is your character like you and your life and stuff?
Definitely. Astral’s super bubbly and she wears her heart on her sleeve. I’m very much like that. She’s kind of naive. There was one episode where Morgan, her best friend, tells her that boys really like it when you laugh at what they say. So she laughs at everything they say. I think she definitely learns that you have to not take things at face value and I think I try to do that, but she’s also a really strong, she’s very brave, she goes after her dreams and that’s something that I always believed in, believe that you should do.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Acting, really singing music. . . . With my friends, maybe living in California because I live in New York now — soon to be L.A. Hopefully having done a lot of different movies.
As a young girl wanting to be an actor, what kind of actor did you see yourself being? A serious one, a comedian one or all of them?
That’s a really good question actually. I’ve always loved everything. I’ve done some more dramatic, more serious roles and I hope to do more later on in the future. Obviously I’ve done comedy. I love the diversity. I love being able to do different things. Hopefully a little bit of everything.
What do you do when you have free time?
I love hanging out with my friends. I’m not really good at sports but I try to do different things to stay active, like yoga. I love fashion. I love shopping, going to the movies. My friends and I really want to go bowling this week. Just regular stuff.
What do you miss about Great Neck?
It’s a beautiful town. I love Great Neck. My family’s there so when I’m not with them I miss family, but it’s super close to Manhattan. I’m there quite a bit actually. So I don’t really miss it that much.