You know, I think where I am today would not have been possible without the support and encouragement I’ve gotten from my parents.Living in Ottawa in my younger years, my dad used to drive me five hours to Toronto for a five-minute audition, and then drive back. I am an actor, my brother is an actor, so between the two of us, my dad would be in Toronto three times a week, which isn’t easy for someone with a household of six to look after.How did that external environment shape your perspective on life in your younger years?It’s now that I am realizing that I don’t know enough about my culture or background. My parents spoke English, wore the same clothes [as others], so it’s not like there was a huge difference between my home life and school.Before that concert, I had experienced a year of auditioning without any success, which obviously brings you down and makes you wonder, what if this isn’t the right place for me to be?But that night, I realized that there is no ‘what if,’ because this is the only thing I want to do.
Getting the award was special to me because it was the recognition of not just my work, but all the hard work my sister and parents have put in for me.
Canadian teen sensation, actress Melinda Shankar has managed to defy all odds.
At the tender age of 19, this Guyanese beauty has become a veteran in the teen acting world, and has done what very few South Asians before her have: bagged principle roles in two major globally syndicated TV shows, (YTV), and that too, at a relatively young age.
I chatted with her post ’s 5th Annual Gala in February this year, and discovered that although she’s young in years, she’s old in perspective.
She talked about what inspired her to become an actress, how her positive outlook helped her to become the success she is today, how the unﬂinching support of her family keeps her grounded, and how going back to Guyana helped her connect with her roots. Awards Gala where you were presented with the Actress Of The Year 2011 award.
What was that moment for you and what was it that convinced you that you had to move to Toronto to make it happen?