It is a pleasure to have Denyse Tontz tackle The Five Question Challenge!
Many readers might recognize her as Nikki Ortiz from the Disney Channel’s Dog with a Blog, Jennifer 1 from Nickelodeon’s Big Time Rush and Miranda Montgomery from the short-lived web revival of All My Children.
In addition to her acting career, Ms. Tontz is a talented singer-songwriter that continues to sparkle on social media. One of her songs, “Parachute,” was featured on All My Children and won a Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Original Song for a Drama Series.
For this edition of The Five Question Challenge, Denyse talked about how her famous roles challenged her as an actress and shared her songwriting process.
Jacob Elyachar: When did you get interested in having a career in the entertainment industry?
Denyse Tontz: I started in the industry as a child model, so I guess I have never really known anything different. Growing up in a professional environment around adults and cameras really whips kids into shape! I still went to regular school though as long as I could. I tested out at 15 and did a couple years of college, but at 17…I decided I wanted to move out and pursue my career full time. So far, it has been a wild ride and I had to learn to cook!
JE: As an actress, you have portrayed a diverse group of characters ranging from Miranda Montgomery on the short-lived “All My Children” web revival to “Big Time Rush’s” Jennifer Woods and “Dog with a Blog’s” Nikki Ortiz. How did these roles challenge you as an actress?
DT: Big Time Rush was one of my first steady acting jobs. In fact, up until then I had only done films. So that was a fun one and I made some real lasting friendships from it… Playing Miranda on All My Children was a different kind of challenge. Embarrassingly enough, I had never even seen the show before I booked it, so I had a lot of studying up to do. Soap sets are some of the craziest environments I have ever experienced because they film over 100 pages a day. I had to go home with 40 pages of lines every night to memorize for the next morning! As for Dog With a Blog, it was an absolute breeze. The only challenging part for that was perfecting my Hispanic accent!
JE: Could you please share your songwriting process with my readers?
DT: I have noticed that each song I write tends to happen in a completely different way. Everything I write is based on my experiences, (For example my latest song, “Mr. Hipster”…You cannot just make this stuff up!) More often than not, my producer and I will come up with a melody or chord progression that suits how we are feeling that day. Then, I want to make sure that the words I put to it are great and we make something of it or no one would want to listen to that song again.
JE: What can your fans expect from you in 2015?
DT: I am hoping to crank out a bunch of new tunes in 2015. Maybe try something a little darker, even. I am at a point in my life where it is time to man up and be an adult! I am 20-years-old now! The possibilities are endless!
JE: If you had the chance to meet with aspiring singers or actors, what advice would you share with them?
DT: I would tell them to stick to your guns and do not let people tell you your stuff is stupid. Even if your tracks are considered stupid, sometimes-stupid stuff makes for good entertainment.
To learn more about Denyse, visit her website!
You can also connect with Denyse on social media. Visit her Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube channels!