by Shelby Stivale
Get ready to go back home with Jillian Shea Spaeder!
This 15-year-old has already taken the acting world by storm and now it’s her time to let her singing and songwriting abilities shine. Jillian is making her mark on the music world with debut single, “Story,” and it’s the high-engery song you’ve been missing in your life!
The best part? She’s is giving TigerBeat readers early access to the totally fierce music video shot in her hometown of Malvern, Pennsylvania. Keep scrolling to check out the scenic visual and to get the inside scoop on all things Jillian: from her inspiration behind the song to favorite lyrics and everything in between!
Can you talk about the inspiration behind “Story”?
Jillian: I thought about what it’s like when friendships or relationships become one-sided, and “Story” came from that.
Do you have a favorite lyric from the song?
Jillian: My favorite line is, “I don’t know if it’s worth trying to go back to what it was before,” because I think it describes one of those internal conflicts we’ve all had with ourselves about whether or not a relationship is worth continuing.
How would you describe your musical sound in three words?
Jillian: I’d describe my sound as original, acoustic, and fun. I originally wrote this song on the acoustic guitar, but I decided I really wanted a beat drop. Maybe I’ll post the acoustic version at some point!
Is there an overall message to your music?
Jillian: My music really stems from real life events, so I guess I want my songs to be relatable to most other kids my age. I want people to be able to listen to my songs and feel like they have experienced similar things.
What’s one thing fans would be surprised to know about shooting the music video?
Jillian: We wanted to film it [in my hometown] since it’s my first video, and Philly always holds a special place in my heart.
Is there anything else about the music video you want our readers to know, like fun-facts or on-set memories?
Jillian: Filming this music video involved a lot of close friends. My good friend Matt Martinez co-stars and my good family friends filmed and edited the video for us. We actually shot some of the scenes in the park near my childhood home, so the music video is really personal to my life growing up in Pennsylvania.
If you could tell your fans one thing, what would it be?
Jillian: Don’t worry about what other people think of you; just be yourself no matter what.
"Meet your new favorite singer: Jillian Shea!
This 15-year-old Pennsylvania native is a total quadruple threat. With her already impressive acting resume paired with her singing, songwriting and instrument playing abilities, there’s nothing Jillian can’t do!
Her debut single, 'Story' is a high-engery breakup song that’s everything we needed to get us through the rest of the summer. From her meaningful lyrics to the dance-worthy beats we’re going to be playing this jam on repeat for a while! Keep scrolling to check out Jillian’s newest song, ;Story;..."
Move over Impractical Jokers, “Walk the Prank” is stirring up all the laughs, but with kids in charge. Jillian Shea Spaeder, known for her role as Bailey, is serving us plenty of smiles at only 15-years-old. While the actress has just begun her career, she’s found great success on both Nickelodeon and Disney. Spaeder doubles as a singer-songwriter as well, mastering covers on her YouTube, with plans to release her own debut music this year. If you were on “Walk the Prank” who would you prank, and what would you do? Let us know in the comments below!
Photo Series by Shanna Fisher @shannafisher
Interview x Story by Dylan Jader @thedylanjader
PRUNE: Describe yourself in 150 Characters or Less
JSS: I am an actor and musician from Philadelphia. I sing and play guitar, piano, and ukulele, and I'm working on my original music. I love spending time with friends and family both in L.A. and at home in PA.
PRUNE: What wakes you up in the AM?
JSS: My mom and the need for food!
PRUNE: Your biggest virtue?
PRUNE: Your biggest vice
PRUNE: Favorite Quote
JSS: "Bears. Beets. Battlestar Galactica." (Jim from The Office.)
PRUNE: An embarrassing moment?
JSS: I once took some pictures on the beach, and when I went back I laid on the beach chair with my dad to show him--turns out it wasn't my dad!
PRUNE: 3 things you swear by daily.
JSS: Playing guitar, hugs, and nachos.
PRUNE: What are you working on?
JSS: The third season of Walk The Prank starts airing in April. Also I am working on my original music.
PRUNE: Where can we find you on the weekend?
JSS: Hanging with my friends and getting ice cream
PRUNE: What song are you playing on repeat?
JSS: All of Thomas Rhett's songs!
PRUNE: Where can we follow you?
JSS: Instagram : @Jilliansheaspaeder Musical.ly : @Jillian.spaede
She’s the clever and mischievous prankster who plots and executes pranks on unsuspecting targets alongside her friends.
At least that’s the role she plays as Bailey on the Disney XD series “Walk the Prank.”
The glitz and glamour of Hollywood is all new to 14-year-old Jillian Shea Spaeder.
She started her career with several roles in regional musical theater, but it was a quick trip to Los Angeles that changed the life of the Philadelphia-area native.
Jillian came to California for a singing competition in the summer of 2014. While there, she attended several seminars. She also gained the attention of her manager who recognized her talent and encouraged her to consider moving to California.
In February of 2015, Jillian took a leap of faith, packed her bags for what she thought would be a two-month adventure in Los Angeles to see what the industry was all about.
After about nine weeks in southern California, pilot and movie auditions, Jillian was ready to go home. But as luck would have it, she got the call for an audition a few days before her flight.
After a series of auditions and callbacks lasting about two months, Jillian found out she landed the role of Bailey for a new Disney XD series “Walk the Prank.”
“When I got the news I was so excited, because it seemed so fun and so awesome!” said Jillian.
The pilot was picked up in June 2015 and has currently finished production on season two. Jillian stars as the only female lead on the show.
“Bailey is a fun character to play,” said Jillian. “I’m not as mean as Bailey, but I’m definitely as sassy as she is. “Bailey seems all tough, but it’s nice when she gets upset about something. I like exploring her personality.”
Though Jillian calls Pennsylvania “home” she has settled in nicely in southern California.
“When I’m not working, we go back home to visit friends and family,” said Jillian. “I miss them, but I’ve made a lot of friends out here, too. The actors I work with are some of my best friends. We hang out on and off set and I always look forward to working.”
Jillian admitted it’s tricky to keep up with school on set, so when she’s not working, she spends time doing things for school.
Jillian also loves to practice music and perform with her family when not working. She got her start singing and playing the piano, along with clarinet and saxophone, when she was nine years old and now continues to play guitar and write and record original music.
Santa Clarita residents may have seen Jillian perform at Music 4 Purpose’s concert on March 28, at Wolf Creek Brewery. The event was the organization’s first benefit concert, and proceeds benefitted 2020Mom.org, a mental health care organization that supports mothers.
Jillian can be found spending her spare time sharing her talents with her fans on social media, tumbling, practicing her back handsprings or cuddling with her pet hedgehog Kirpi.
In just a few short years, Jillian has taken Hollywood by storm, and by the looks of her success, she has no plans of slowing down.
“I love what I do, I love acting and singing and want to continue to do both.”
To learn more about Jillian, visit www.jilliansheaspaeder.com, or follow her on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.
JILLIAN SHEA SPAEDER FROM “WALK THE PRANK” SITS DOWN WITH TMI TO TALK ABOUT HER MUSIC & ACTING CAREER!
Jillian, you started your acting career at a very young age, what inspired you to try acting?
When I was little, I used to put on shows for my family. I did some small roles and solos in elementary school concerts, which really gave me the acting bug. I asked my mom for acting lessons, and she found me a private coach, Pamela Sheehan. Once I started lessons with her, I ended up getting cast in an equity theatre Panto, the only child in a cast of 12. That really started the ball rolling!
What actor/actress are you influenced by?
I’m a big Grey’s Anatomy fan, so I’m really inspired by Ellen Pompeo.
You are known for your role on the Disney XD series “Walk the Prank,” which can also be seen on Disney channel. Can you explain the process of how you got this role?
I was signed by my manager after attending a seminar in Hollywood the summer of 2014. She encouraged me to come out for pilot season early the next year, so my mom and I came out for two months. Right at the end of our stay, I auditioned for Walk the Prank. The next day I saw producers and found out that evening that I would be testing for the role of Bailey. A few weeks later, I attended a mix-and-match with three other girls going for the role and some boys going for the male leads. That evening, I was told it was down to one other girl and me. Several weeks later, I got the call from producers saying I got the role.
Can you explain the character you portray?
Bailey is the only girl in a group of four pranksters (who air their real-life pranks online). She is confident and a little bit sassy, She likes to make fun of the boys–but she’s also a really good friend when they need it.
What do you think makes this show standout from other prank shows that have been aired on other networks?
Walk the Prank is half-scripted and half-reality (because the characters pull the pranks on REAL people). The pranks are completely crazy and elaborate!
What’s it like being the only female lead on the show?
Well, I usually take a lot longer in hair and make-up than the boys! It’s fun being the only girl in the cast, because I feel like I have four brothers taking care of me. We’re like a family.
What’s your favorite part about being on “Walk The Prank”?
Everything! Where else can you prank people and not get in trouble for it?
What’s your favorite part about being on set?
Honestly? The food rocks! We have an awesome caterers who feeds us breakfast and lunch everyday, and we also have “Crafty,” a group of guys who keep us stocked with every snack imaginable throughout the day.
How do you and the other cast members get along? Do you guys have any rituals before filming?
I love hanging out with my castmates–we’re great friends. We don’t have any rituals before filming, but we spend a lot of time off set together, too.
What’s an average week like on set?
Some weeks we do pranks, which are at different locations like malls, restaurants or houses. Some weeks we shoot scripted scenes, which are done in the studio. Every day we have to go to the hair and make-up trailer to get ready. For some pranks, I will be in the make-up chair for several hours while our special-effects artist turns me into things like a vampire, alien or a girl with no face! In between shooting, we have to do school with our set teacher. On scripted weeks, I have to go home and learn lines for the next day.
In addition to acting, you are a passionate singer and guitarist breaking into music with an impressive vocal range and unique sound. What inspired you to try singing?
I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t singing. I grew up in a musical household, so I’ve been singing my whole life. My parents have a band, and I started doing some guest appearances with them around 9 years old. I really love it.
How did you get into guitar?
We had several guitars laying around the house, and one day (about a year and a half ago), I picked one up, then started looking at chords online and trying to play them. After I picked it up, I never put it down!
What other instruments do you play?
I play piano and ukulele, and I played saxophone and clarinet for several years.
What would you say is your favorite instrument? Why?
The guitar is definitely my favorite instrument–it feels like it’s just a part of me!
Did you want to be an actor and singer when you were little, or did that develop later on?
I always wanted to be a singer, but the desire to act built over time as I grew up.
How would you describe your musical style?
I would say I have a singer-songwriter style.
What’s your favorite song to perform live?
“Bring It Back” by Shawn Mendes.
Are there any artists that you look up to right now?
Right now, I like listening to Tori Kelly’s music. I think she is an amazing musician, and I’m learning so much from her guitar and vocal styles. I also like Shawn Mendes, Ed Sheeran, Meghan Trainor and Adele.
Have you ever been starstruck by anyone you’ve met so far?
I met Meghan Trainor when she was signing CDs last year. She was SO nice and had a compliment for every person who came up to her.
Can we expect any new music soon? If so can you spill some details about them?
I’m hoping to put out an EP later this year. A few of my songs are about self-empowerment.
Are there any other projects in the works you can tell us about?
Working on a series, you don’t have much opportunity to do other projects, but I’m hoping to do something over the summer while we’re not filming.
What are your friends and parents thoughts on your career in singing and acting?
My family and friends have all been really supportive. Because I’m from the East Coast, I have a whole group of people rooting me on from the other side of the country!
What goals have you set out for yourself in your career and in your personal life?
Professionally, I want to make music that makes people feel something, and I actually want to be in a horror movie! Personally, I hope to inspire others to be themselves and don’t be afraid to try something new.
What would you say has been your biggest accomplishment so far in your career as a singer and actor?
I feel really fortunate to be a on a Disney show!
Overall, how has this whole acting and singing career experience been for you?
It all happened so quickly that it still feels a little bit like I’m going to wake up from some crazy dream. I’m just having so much fun.
Do you have any advice for anyone trying to make it as a singer or actor?
I have a lot of friends who are super talented but haven’t caught a break yet. You have to keep trying if you really love it.
You also do a lot of cover songs. What’s the process of choosing a cover song for you to sing?
If I really love the song, it doesn’t matter what style it is or if it’s sung by a girl or a guy. I just figure out the chords and learn it.
What was your favorite cover song to record?
I’m a huge Beatles fan, so recording “Come Together” in the studio was pretty awesome.
What social media platform do you use most to stay connected to your fans?
I stay connected through Instagram (@Jilliansheaspaeder) and Musical.ly (@Jillian.Spaeder)
How do you want your relationship to be with your fans?
I consider my fans my friends, so I hope they treat me that way.
Does your fan base have a name?
Not yet, ha ha!
What was the craziest fan encounter you have had?
I was at a birthday party, and an entire Little League baseball team came up to me. They all wanted separate pictures!
Do you have any other talents other than singing and acting?
I am a master slime-maker!
What 5 words would you use to describe yourself?
Creative. Crazy. Friendly. Musical. Energetic.
If your life was a movie, what would be the title?
From Coast to Coast: One Girl’s Story
Who would you want to play you?
Well, since I’m only 14 I have to pick someone younger than me, so I’ll suggest my friend Ariana Greenblatt, from Stuck in the Middle!
Do you have any last things you want to tell your fans?
Thanks for watching the show, and please buy my album when it comes out!
Thanks for taking the time to do this interview
Happy #MusicMonday y’all!
Disney XD's "Walk The Prank" star Jillian Shea Spaeder isn't just an amazing actress and hilarious prankster, she's also an amazing musician!
She came by the YSBnow House to tell us about her show and perform an original song she wrote for us!
Let her wow you with her incredible vocals and relatable lyrics and let us know what you think by tweeting us @YSBnow!
Jillian Shea Spaeder prank calls Cassie DiLaura's mom!
Check our exclusive interview with young up-and-coming Philadelphia-area native actress Jillian Shea Spaeder who is currently starring on hit Disney XD series “Walk the Prank”.
Jillian is also a talented musician whose natural born instincts for performing on stage and screen are setting her up for success in both television and music.
Describe yourself in 3 words!
Three word that describe me are fun-loving, fearless and musical
Anyone in your family is also in the business?
No one in my family is in the industry, just me!
How did you get involved in acting?
I started doing small roles in concerts and musicals in elementary school. In fifth grade, I started with a private acting coach fifth grade, and that holiday season I was cast in my first equity theatre production–the only child in a cast of 12. The following summer I met my manager while at a performing arts seminar in Hollywood, and she offered to represent me. Because we live on the East Coast, we weren’t sure about living in California, so she encouraged us to come out for pilot season to test the waters. I had a lot of auditions during this two-month period, including the one for Walk the Prank!
Do you have or had acting classes?
I had a private acting coach back home in PA, and I also took a lot of acting classes and private coaching sessions when I came out to L.A. for pilot season. When the show is not filming, I go back to classes for improv and scene study. I also do private coaching any time I have an audition.
Tell us about your role in Disney XD series “Walk the Prank,” And how did you cast for it?
Walk the Prank is a really funny show about four kids who have a popular online hidden camera show where they prank people. What makes it different is that we prank REAL people, so the show combines scripted comedy and real-life pranks.
What other project you have been part of?
I filmed some segments for DreamWorksTV on YouTube and also an episode of Nicky, Ricky, Dicky & Dawn.
Who is your favorite actress/actor?
My favorite actress right now is Ellen Pompeo…I am obsessed with Grey’s Anatomy.
If you could act with anyone as your co-star, who would it be and why?
I thought about this for a while but realized that I actually have the perfect co-stars. I love my boys!
Best advice ever given?
Be the person everyone wants to work with again…enthusiastic, kind and professional.
Who is your biggest supporter?
My family (my mom, dad, brother, and sister) are all super supportive of me.
Favorite song? Why?
Yesterday, by the Beatles, is my favorite song, because I just love the melody. The song never goes out of style.
How is a normal day in your life?
When I’m filming the show, a normal day is 9 ½ hours on set, which includes school, coming home to learn lines, binge-watching some Grey’s, and playing some guitar and singing. Oh, yeah, and eating!
Something people don’t know about you?
Most people would be surprised to learn I love music from the 70’s and 80’s!
What kind of music do you listen normally?
I listen to pop music mostly. I love Megan Trainor, Shawn Mendes, and the Beatles. One of my newest favorites is James TW.
What would be the dream holiday, and who would you go with?
I am from a small town in Pennsylvania but live in CA while filming, so my dream holiday is actually spending time at home with my family.
What is you favorite song to belt out in the car/for karaoke?
Rocking out to Bohemian Rhapsody, for sure!
3 things you can’t leave home without?
I can’t leave home without my guitar, my phone, and my mom—because she drives me everywhere!
Do you support any charity?
My family has always sponsored kids through Children International, so that organization is close to my heart.
What do you think of Social Media?
I love social media. It gives me a chance to connect with friends, both from back home and here, as well as fans from our show.
Where we can follow you?
My official website is JillianSheaSpaeder.com and my social media links are:
Facebook: Jillian Shea Spaeder (music); Jillian Spaeder (general)
Quote: “I just like smiling…smiling’s my favorite.” –Buddy the Elf
Travel Destination: Paris
Sports Team: Philadelphia Phillies
TV Show: Grey’s Anatomy
Book: A Tale Dark and Grimm