Freshman to star in Disney Channel show

By Maya Spitzer

Rachel Katz ’11 never thought she would pursue professional acting, but then on a whim, she tried out for a Disney Channel pilot at the suggestion of her drama teacher from elementary school.

Katz reluctantly gave up her last day of spring break to try out at the casting call after being encouraged by her parents. After eight stressful weeks and five grueling rounds of callbacks, Katz was selected as a cast member of the new Disney pilot show “J.O.N.A.S,” her first professional acting job.

The sitcom is about the real life Jonas Brothers Band with a twist: the brothers are secret agents protecting society from evil, their celebrity an opportune cover for their identities.

Although the show is only in the tentative pilot stage, Katz believes it will likely materialize considering the popularity of the Jonas Brothers Band. Katz has signed a three year contract for the show, and describes her character Willie, short for Wilhelmina, as a Jonas Brothers über-fan.

“She is the nerd madly in love with all the Jonas brothers,” Katz elaborated.

As to Katz’s similarity with her character, she admits, “Well, I’m definitely zany; I have nerd qualities.”

While she acknowledges that she is anxious to know the outcome of the pilot’s success, she is most concerned at the moment with starting ninth grade.

When asked if she would continue with the show after three years if it becomes a success, she quickly responded “yes,” but then bit her lip and took a deep breath and scrunched up her pastel blue eyes and freckled face and continued, “well actually, I am 110 percent definitely going to college, so I would have to think about that.”

Her entrance into the limelight seems to be an uneasy transition for Katz, who asserted that her upcoming fame is the most worrisome aspect of the whole experience.

“I’m new to this whole thing, but I want my life to stay normal,” she said. “My friends are excited about it, but they better slap me if I start to change”

So far the show has produced a pilot episode, which took about two weeks to complete in June.
Only time will tell where “J.O.N.A.S.” will take Katz, and she “want[s] to have fun with this and experience something not lots of people do,” said Katz. Transitioning the show more and more into her life, she plans to spend her birthday at  Disney channel star Miley Cyrus’ concert, in which the Jonas Brothers Band will be opening.