Justina Machado

OF ‘ONE DAY AT A TIME’ ON NET­FLIX

The Fresno Bee (Sunday) - - On Tv - BY GE­ORGE DICKIE

Last sea­son, your char­ac­ter Pene­lope fought de­pres­sion. How is that to play as an act­ing chal­lenge?

I find it ex­cit­ing. I don’t find it chal­leng­ing. I don’t find any­thing that

I do with this char­ac­ter on this show chal­leng­ing. I find it very ex­cit­ing to be able to in­ter­pret that, to be able to rep­re­sent that for peo­ple that have de­pres­sion, that have anx­i­ety. Of course, you want to get it right so you have ques­tions, you talk to peo­ple that will talk to you about what they strug­gle with and you try to put that into your per­for­mance. But I just find it su­per-ex­cit­ing. I never find any­thing chal­leng­ing about this char­ac­ter or about this show.

The one thing that kind of got me in the be­gin­ning was the live au­di­ence. I was like “Whoa!” I had to fig­ure out how to do my job well and not worry so much about en­ter­tain­ing them all the time. Be­cause, you know, there’s go­ing to be a take that’s not go­ing to work, you’re go­ing to try some­thing else, you’re go­ing to have to do an­other take. And when you find that bal­ance of the live au­di­ence, which is in­cred­i­ble be­cause they give you so much en­ergy, but also the bal­ance of do­ing your job be­cause the fourth wall is bro­ken. So that was the chal­leng­ing part in the be­gin­ning, and now that to me is also ex­cit­ing.

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