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Nicole Huff – All The Things

Words + Interview By Lucky Smith

Nicole Huff is a multi-talent actress who has excelled in everything from modeling, theatre, commercials voice-over acting and even Karate. She and I discussed acting, achieving a black belt in Karate, discipline, CBC’s “Pretty Hard Cases” and more.  Nicole can currently be seen starring as Paige Aquino in Netflix’s “Tiny Pretty Things”. Enjoy! 

Tell us about Netflix’s, “Tiny Pretty Things”.  
The show follows the world of these elite ballet students that attend the Archer School of Ballet in Chicago. It is full of drama and darkness and is steamy and intense. I play Paige Aquino and she is outgoing, loving, sassy and corky. She is an important role because she acts as a catalyst in the story because of what she goes through. We get to see her vulnerability and strength in the series. 

In what ways is your character Paige similar and different to you as a person in real life? 
I don’t go through the challenge Paige goes through however, we are both passionate about our craft, loving and outgoing. 

What was your most memorable moment on set? 
My most memorable moment on set was filming the nightmare scene in episode 9. Being in that setting and working with Lauren Holly was incredible. It is a super well done scene. 

“Tiny Pretty Things” is based on a novel of the same name by Sona Charaipotra and Dhonielle Clayton. Are you a reader? If so, what was your favorite book growing up? 
I read the novel before filming to get an idea of the story and genre. I do love reading ever since I’ve grown up. I grew up listening to my parents read me Dr. Seuss and Robert Munsch books and I believe it helped me become a more creative person. I love The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett and The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald. 

What are your Top 5 Netflix shows or films of all time? 
Maid in Manhattan, Mean Girls, The Notebook, Christmas with the Kranks and Tiny Pretty Things, of course!

In your opinion, what is the biggest misconception about the entertainment business? 
Many people believe the industry is glamorous. There are glamorous moments however, many aren’t always aware about how much work goes into creating a movie and show. Rejection in the industry is inevitable so every actor goes through it. 

A great deal of the world has dealt with the COVID-19 pandemic in some form or fashion. How has it affected you personally and what steps have you taken to keep busy? 
I’ve been watching a lot of movies at home. I sing and dance a lot around the house. I also remind myself to relax and not be so hard on myself. You don’t always have to be busy and we are all trying to get through this together. 

Other than acting, what are some other things you are involved in? Do you have a favorite? 
Music and dance are my other focuses. I’m also in my last year of University and teach French to children on the side. 

So, you once held the crown as Miss All Canadian? 
I was a little girl when I held that crown. It felt amazing to wear a crown and receive my sash for Miss All Canadian, Best in Talent and Best in Public Speaking. I felt like a princess. 

We see you’ve earned a black belt in Karate. Tell us about that experience overall. Also, how long did that take from when you started? 
I learned my discipline, focus, confidence and self-defense from doing Karate. I had an amazing Kyoshi and great Senseis that taught me the different katas, how to spar and defend myself. I believe it took 4 years to achieve my black belt. 

Being that you are a jack of all trades, which of your own do you believe you’ve mastered, if any? I’d say earning a black belt is a pretty great accomplishment, IMO.
I grew up doing so many activities like piano, figure skating, singing, gymnastics, karate, guitar, swimming and soccer. I’ve definitely owned acting and entertaining. I really put my focus into acting, singing and dancing. 

Obviously, discipline is necessary to juggle multiple talents. Did Karate teach you any of that? 
Absolutely. In order to come to the dojo prepared and to learn all the katas, you learn discipline. I believe it is the biggest skill you develop from Karate. 

Are you into martial arts films at all? If so, what is your favorite of all time and why? 
I love movies of all different genres! In terms of martial arts films I love The Karate Kid (2010). Jackie Chan is sensational. 

What has been your hardest moment to date and why? 
Anytime I lost a loved one. I lost two of my grandmas and my aunt. Anyone who goes through that knows how devastating and heartbreaking it is. 

How do you plan on celebrating your next birthday? 
Virtual or with my family. My mom usually is extravagant with celebrations of my birthday. I had a big Sweet 16 and a big 18th birthday debut because it is a Filipino tradition. I am half Filipino, a quarter German and a quarter French. 

CBC’s “Pretty Hard Cases”. What can you tell us about it? 
It is hilarious and full of action. It follows Sam and Kelly on their journey as detectives. They deal with many cases and one of them being the situation around my character, Alina Taylor. She goes through her parents’ nasty divorce and acts out and is interrogated about it. 

Follow Nicole Huff on Instagram @nicolesamanthahuff, on Twitter @nicoleshuff and Facebook: Nicole Huff.

Photo By John Bregar

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