Check our interview with talented actress Sydney Viengluang who moved to Los Angeles to start a career in accounting and finance at a movie studio after graduating from Wichita college. After working behind a desk, Sydney decided to try her hand at acting and started to take classes. Over the last few years, Sydney has quickly become “one to watch” in the entertainment business, bringing to life dynamic and diverse characters.
Recently Sydney role as Dr. Sun Mei can be seen in hit Syfy series “Z Nation.”
Hi Sydney please tell us a little about yourself?
Hello. I was born in Vientiane, Laos and raised in Wichita, KS. I currently reside in Los Angeles and love it here. Right now, you can catch me recurring on SyFy’s hit-TV show, Z Nation, as Dr. Sun Mei.
Who was your role model as a child?
My father was my role model, and he still is. He’s one of the most giving people I know. He also taught me to be my own person and to be proud of who I am and where I came from.
How’s a typical day in your life?
Honestly, I’m pretty boring. I wake up, get some work done, go to the gym, make dinner, and watch TV or a movie. I’ll go out for drinks with some friends once in a blue moon but I’m a homebody nowadays if I’m not on set.
What was your first acting role?
I did a lot of small indie projects when I first started acting but I consider my first real acting role on Criminal Minds: Beyond Border, playing a Thai female officer. It was my first time on a legit TV show.
Do you have or had acting classes?
Yes, I’ve studied at various acting studios in the past but I’m now at Anthony Gilardi Acting Studio. I think it’s important to stay sharp in between acting gigs.
Who has made the biggest impact on your life so far, and why?
My father hands down. He’s always been my rock and part of why I do what I do is to make him proud. I’m definitely a daddy’s girl.
How do you prepare for a role?
I first read a script a few times before I start breaking down the story, the character, and then I start digging into the character more, such as character interviews, day in the life, research, and other techniques that my acting coach has taught me to get the character into my body and heart.
Please tell us about hit SyFy series “Z Nation,” and about your role as Dr. Sun Mei?
Z Nation is a post-apocalyptic zombie horror, action, dramedy. It kind of has everything, which makes it a fun show. My character, Dr. Sun Mei, gets introduced in season 3 as a virologist and leader of the Pan Asian forces to capture Operation Bitemark and find Murphy in order to get his blood to create a vaccine to save human kind from the zombie virus. You’ll have to tune in to see what happens…
What other project you have been part of?
Prior to Z Nation, I was in another zombie-related project called “Isle of the Dead,” starring Joey Lawrence. I’ve also been on various TV shows.
What is next for Sydney Viengluang?
I’m looking forward to 2017 and booking a non-zombie TV show or movie!
Who is your favorite Actor/Actress? And why?
Cate Blanchett. She’s the epitome of an elite actress. Every role she plays, it’s so nuanced and powerful. Viola Davis comes in a very close second — another elite actress I admire.
Any advice to new young actors?
Study the craft and keep working hard to master it. Get to know the business so that you become a good business person as well as an artist.
Where do you see yourself in the next 5 year?
I hope I can become a well-known working actor that represents Asian Americans in TV and film, not just here in the States, but globally.
What was the last book you read?
The Devil in the White City
What are guilty pleasures food wise?
All you can eat KBBQ
What would be the dream holiday, and who would you go with?
I’d like to go to Hawaii with my family.
What do you do in your free time?
I love camping so anytime I get a chance, I love visiting the national parks and enjoying the great outdoors.
What do you like to watch on TV?
I like dark, gritty, dramas but anything with good story lines. I normally don’t watch comedy but I just finished Insecure and it’s one of the best TV shows I’ve watched in a while.
Do you support any charities?
Yes, my acting coach has started a non-profit called HIPPOLife which “rehabilitates through the arts.” The organization helps people heal through art and various outreach programs.
What do you think of Social Media in the Entertainment business?
I think it can be a little overwhelming sometimes with so many different platforms, but overall, it’s a great way to connect and for an actor, get your face and name out there.
Best advice ever given?
Do you have a role model?
Besides my dad, not in particular. I just look up to anyone who is doing their own thing and not afraid to go for it, full force. I also admire people who are positively changing the world around them and contributing to society.
What’s your favorite music?
I don’t have a favorite genre. I listen to anything and everything, from country to rap. Good music is good music. It all depends on my mood.
Where we can follow you?
Quote: No regrets.
Drink: Iced Tea.
Travel Destination: Laos
Sports Team: Wichita State Shockers basketball
Photographer: Riker Brothers Photography
Hair: J. Michael
Makeup: Anton Khachaturian
Stylist: Lo VonRumpf