Ainsley Bailey is shakin’ it up (Exclusive Interview)

“Ainsley Bailey is shakin’ it up (Exclusive Interview)”
By Michael Aaron Gallagher of StayFamous.Net

Ainsley Bailey
Ainsley Bailey

When you first meet Ainsley Bailey, there’s a part of you that expects her to sound like her character Dina on the hit Disney Channel series Shake It Up, even if you know that her television accent isn’t real. But then as you start talking to her, you realize that she’s actually a lot different than her character – that is, except for the good qualities.

She’s kind and polite, she’s low-key with a great sense of humor, she’s really fun to talk to and perhaps most amusing, she’s a little more of a girly-girl. From her love of cupcakes and the color pink to her two cute dogs Saki and Dexter (a Yorkie-Pom and a Westie), it’s pretty safe to say that her tomboy character on the show would be a little surprised to meet her real-life counterpart. But then again, that’s the mark of every great actress.

In a recent interview with StayFamous.Net, Ainsley chatted about the new season of Shake It Up, her fellow cast members and even shared her plans for the day, which started out with a trip to Pinkberry and ended up being an adventure on the red carpet for the movie premiere of The Odd Life of Timothy Green at the El Capitan Theatre in Hollywood, California.

Michael Aaron Gallagher: “So first of all, tell me a little bit about yourself. Where are you originally from, and how did you get your start as an actor?”

Ainsley Bailey: “I’m from Dallas Texas. I started acting when I was about 10 years old. They would pass out these packets at my elementary school… and there was an ad for a local community theater. So I dragged my friend along and I was really excited. I tried out and I guess the rest is history. I just kind of fell in love with it there and then got into TV and film.”

Michael Aaron Gallagher: “How did you end up landing the role on Shake It Up?”

Ainsley Bailey: “My manager actually got me the audition while I was in Dallas. She told me about it and I flew out, I think it was the next day. I was really excited because I had heard of the show… It was funny because after the audition, I actually thought that I totally blew it. So I was really upset. And then my manager called me after the audition and she was like, ‘How did it go?’ And I was like, ‘I don’t think it went very well.’ And she was like, ‘Well, you have a callback.’ Then the next day I went to the callback and then I found out that night that I booked it. So it was a pretty fast roller coaster process.”

Michael Aaron Gallagher: “What made you want to get into television?”

Ainsley Bailey: “I’ve always loved both the TV and film aspect of things. You know, I liked theater when I was doing it. I thought it was really fun. I just really liked the style of TV and film and just wanted to get into doing a different variety of characters than were offered at my little community theater. So I just got into doing some classes and then found out that was really the direction I wanted to go in. Once the audition for Shake It Up came along, it just seemed like the perfect role at the perfect time. Everything just luckily fell into place after all those years.”

Actress Ainsley Bailey and the "Shake It Up" Cast on Disney Channel.
Actress Ainsley Bailey and the “Shake It Up” Cast on Disney Channel.

Michael Aaron Gallagher: “For people who don’t know, talk a little bit about your character and how she has progressed up to this point in the series.”

Ainsley Bailey: “I play Dina Garcia, who is Deuce’s (AKA Adam Irigoyen, the actor who plays him) his girlfriend. The first episode I was in was called ‘Mash It Up.’ They just fixed us up (CeCe and Rocky), because they thought we were the perfect little couple – I was sort of the girl version of him. So we’re really similar. We always wear headphones and we’re always wheelin’ and dealin’ and we’ve always got stuff to sell that we hide in our jackets. It’s a really fun, quirky character and I get to do kind of like a Jersey accent. That’s really fun. It’s just completely different from myself which I really enjoy.”

Michael Aaron Gallagher: “When you meet fans of Shake It Up, what are some of the questions people ask you?”

Ainsley Bailey: “A lot of times they ask is that really how you sound? Is that your real voice? They’ll ask how I got started, because I’ll meet a lot of kids that they want to be on TV or it’s their dream to be on Disney. So it’s a lot of –  ‘How do I get there? How can I do that?’ Which my advice is always, work hard and be dedicated and if you’re really passionate about it and if it’s really what you love to do then it’ll happen.”

Michael Aaron Gallagher: “Have you had a chance to get to know any other Disney stars besides the ones on your show?”

Ainsley Bailey: “It’s actually kind of funny. One of my really good friends, Spencer Boldman is on Lab Rats. We actually go to the same acting school. I knew him from Dallas, we were friends before. So it’s just kind of fun to have another friend there. Also Kenton Duty [who also stars on Shake It Up], we went to the same acting school years ago when we were in Dallas. It was funny because I didn’t know he was on the show until I met him in the green room – It was like, ‘Oh hey, you’re here.’”

Michael Aaron Gallagher: “Describe each of your fellow cast members in a word or sentence.”

Ainsley Bailey: “Bella [Thorne] is so funny, and very energetic, which I love. She’s very peppy, which is really cute. And then Zendaya [Coleman], I think Zendaya is so cool. She always tweets stuff about swag…. She’s a cool person. Adam [Irigoyen] to me is just so funny. He’s wise beyond his years. I feel like he’s very mature for his age. Caroline [Sunshine] is one of the sweetest people I’ve ever met. She’s just so sweet and lovely. I just love her. Kenton [Duty] is really cool also. He just seems very cool and suave, and he’s also hilarious. Roshon [Fegan] cracks me up, he’s also very energetic. I feel like he’s always rapping and he’s always kind of dancing, which is hilarious to watch. And then Davis [Cleveland] is one of the cutest kids I’ve ever seen. He’s such a hard worker for being so little. I can’t imagine being that dedicated, on top of being 10. He’s amazing to me. It’s been such a great experience getting to work with everyone and just being welcomed into their little family.”

Michael Aaron Gallagher: “I did an interview a few months ago with Adam Irigoyen (click here to read). As you probably know, his motto is ‘Never Give Up.’ Do you have a favorite quote or a song that inspires or motivates you?”

Ainsley Bailey: “I have a similar motto. It’s ‘Follow your dreams.’ Whenever kids ask me to sign stuff, I usually try to put that on there if I have time. That’s something that I’ve always lived by, ever since I was little . Follow your heart. Follow your dreams. It’s truly what I believe and I feel like I wouldn’t be here if I didn’t live by that motto.”

Michael Aaron Gallagher: “Now as you get older, are you looking to eventually move away from being on the Disney Channel to look for more mature roles or is it something that you can see yourself doing for a while longer?”

Ainsley Bailey: “Yeah, absolutely. I love Disney and I’ve had so much fun doing it. And I would love to continue for as long as they’ll have me but I also want to have a really versatile career. I want to do films and I love comedy. But I also want to do things that challenge me too and do some dramatic stuff. I just want to kind of do everything. I want to show that I’m versatile and that I can handle anything that comes my way. So at this point, I’m pretty much ready for anything.”

Shake It Up airs Sundays at 8:30 p.m. ET/PT on Disney Channel. You can follow Ainsley Bailey on Twitter @AinsleyBailey and become a fan of her on Facebook at

“Ainsley Bailey is shakin’ it up (Exclusive Interview)”
Copyright 2012 by Michael Aaron Gallagher

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