Interview by Carol Wright | Photos Courtesy of Lucy and Lileina Capri
We got to chat with sisters Lucy and Lileina Capri about starting their careers at a young age and the advice they have for aspiring actors.
You two are both young, but you have already started your careers. Have you always been interested in acting and performing?
Lucy: Yes, I have always loved performing and I started acting when I was two. I was in some theater shows at church and then when my sister started doing commercials, I wanted to too. Sometimes they cast siblings and we always have a lot of fun working together!
Lileina: I have always had fun acting and I started doing theater productions at church, when I was little too. I remember singing on stage and everyone saying, “I stole the show.” I made a lot of people laugh and I remember laughing a lot too. When I was four, one of my parents’ friends suggested that my sister and I meet an agent that she knew, because a lot of commercials filmed in our area. She thought it would be fun for us. I had a lot of fun going on auditions and I always was sooo excited when I would book something. One of my first commercials was for the Disney Cruise Lines and Lucy got to be in it too. It was awesome! I was hooked!
Lucy, you can be seen in the new Disney+ series The Right Stuff. Tell us a bit about the show and your character.
Lucy: The Right Stuff is a television series about the first American astronauts. In the 1950s, which was a LONG time ago, the Americans were trying to be the first people to go to space – but the Russians beat them. My character, Janita Cooper, her dad (Gordo Cooper) was one of these American astronauts. Janita was a real person since this was based on a true story. On the show, she and her family moved a lot since her dad was in the space program. She thought it was really cool that her daddy was an astronaut. She also had a big sister named Cam and her Mom was Trudy Cooper – who was also an amazing pilot. Trudy REALLY wanted to be an astronaut and go into space too!
Lucy, you can also now be seen in Hillbilly Elegy. What did you learn from working with Director Ron Howard and your castmates?
Lucy: Mr. Howard is super nice and he says, “thank you” a lot. He makes everyone feel very good about what they are doing. He really helped my on-screen sister (Tierney Smith) and I imagine the situations we were acting in. He sat down on the floor with us and explained everything, so that we understood but would also not be afraid – because the situations were not really “really” happening, of course. Some of the scenes were very sad and we cried in them. My on-screen parents (Sunny Mabrey and Brett Lorenzini) were really, really nice too. They are very good actors and you really believed what they were doing because they were so natural.
Lileina, you’re a voiceover artist. How do you usually prep for the voiceover work you do and is there a favorite project you’ve worked on?
Lileina: When I get a new script, I read through it silently the first time, and then the next few times, I read through it out loud. If it is about a subject that I don’t know much about, my mom and I research it together. I also look up how to pronounce any words I may have never read or heard before. For example, I recently did a project for a dinosaur exhibition – I learned how to say some really cool prehistoric dinosaur names! Also, if I’m recording a project with singing – those are my favorite! – I always warm up first with vocal and pitch drills and use my throat steamer. I’ve been working on an animated project since the summer and we just wrapped on the first season in December. I can’t wait for everyone to see it! (And the songs in it are SUPER cute too!)
During quarantine, numerous parts of the entertainment industry came to a halt. How have you been keeping yourself creative and motivated?
Lucy: I am reallllly looking forward to things going back to normal – I hope they do someday! I have continued taking classes (acting, voice, and dance) on Zoom but I cannot wait to be back in class and in-person again soon – except for my singing lessons, those have always been online because my teacher is in California. I have been doing voiceovers from our home studio and I am always excited to do a directed session on Zoom or Skype because then I get to see people again, face to face. It’s been great to still get to act and I’m really grateful for the voiceovers. I have filmed a few commercials (out-of-state and in-state), this year. I was so excited to travel – safely, of course. These sets had a LOT of safety measures and that made me (and my parents) feel very safe. I also have been helping my parents, who both love to cook, in the kitchen a LOT. I LOVE cooking and baking! I’ve done a lot of that in quarantine too.
Lileina: I have continued to take voiceover classes and singing lessons via Zoom, and thankfully those haven’t changed. We have a professional home studio to record in and so we have been able to record voiceover projects from home. I’m SOOO glad voiceovers didn’t have to stop – I love it so much! I’m really thankful that my parents had a studio built at home a few years ago – it’s been really helpful to have, especially this year. I’ve also been riding my bike a lot – it’s one of my favorite things to do (and I’m getting really fast).
What advice do you have for aspiring actors?
Lucy: Always be yourself. If you act fake, others can see it. Be natural and enjoy every moment – and have fun! It has to be fun! Trust your imagination too and really be “in the moment” when you are on-set. Pay attention to what’s going on at all times.
Lileina: Take your time. Never rush through a script or rush during an audition. Like my sister said, “be natural” and relax. Casting directors are on your team, they want you to do good – don’t ever think they want you to fail because they don’t! If you remember that, you won’t get nervous. And most importantly – HAVE FUN!
If you’d like to keep up with Lucy and Lileina, you can do so on Instagram and Twitter @ALilJoyKidsVO and @TheLucyCapri.