How Symera Jackson Uses Her Voice for Change
Photo credit: Ryan West
Actress Symera Jackson can currently be seen playing Jackie Murphy in the Netflix series, Team Kaylie. Symera sat down with Glitter to talk about her big break, how she prepares for roles, how she uses her voice for change, favorite places to travel, her beauty indulgence, and her definition of self-love. Read on for more on this talented actress who is using her voice for change.
GLITTER; How long have you been acting?
SYMERA: When I was younger, I would love to perform skits in front of my parents and run around the house dancing and singing. One day we watched the Disney movie, Enchanted, and I could not believe that people could make a career out of playing pretend. Around the same time, I was inspired by a “princess” who came to my birthday party dressed as Sleeping Beauty. Lisa Schwartz, aka “Sleeping Beauty,” became our close family friend and she got me started in children’s theater around the age of five. Then around age nine, I continued with musical theater, booked some amazing short films, commercials, PSAs, guest star roles, and then landed the role as Jackie Murphy in Team Kaylie on Netflix!
GLITTER: What would you say was your big break?
SYMERA: I have worked on many incredible projects and I am grateful for every opportunity. But, if I had to choose one as my “big break”, I’d say it was landing the role of Jackie Murphy as a series regular on the Netflix original comedy, Team Kaylie. I am extremely proud to be on such an entertaining and hilarious sitcom!
Photo credit: Ryan West
GLITTER: What can you tell us about the Netflix show, Team Kaylie? Who do you play? When will it be airing?
SYMERA: Team Kaylie is about a Hollywood socialite (Kaylie Konrad) who gets sentenced to a year of community service leading the Wilderness Club at an inner-city middle school (Pico Middle School). Kaylie may be an expert in the Hollywood glam lifestyle, but she knows nothing about the wilderness, or kids! Our show represents the messages of discovering who you are as an individual, and the power of teamwork. I play Jackie Murphy, who is a straight-A student, perfectionist, and goody-two-shoes who is a member of the Pico Middle School Wilderness Club. Part 1 & Part 2 are streaming now! Part 2 dropped on Dec. 2nd with an additional 6 episodes, and a special Holiday episode.
GLITTER: How are you like your character?
SYMERA: Jackie and I are similar as we both love school and get good grades. However, I tend to be a bit more laid back, while Jackie is quite uptight, and Jackie also follows the rules a bit more than I do – LOL! 😊
GLITTER: How do you prepare for your roles?
SYMERA: Practice, practice, practice! I spend a lot of time rehearsing my lines, analyzing scenes, characters, and settings and really just diving into the details for each role and script. I like to get specific and discover who she is, where she comes from, what she’s doing, what is the relationship and what is the conflict. The more I dedicate to the analysis, the more comfortable I feel on actually becoming that character.
GLITTER: What is your approach to auditioning?
SYMERA: Be prepared, have a good attitude, be confident, be open to change, be patient, persevere, and be me. ❤
GLITTER: How do you use your voice for change?
SYMERA: I am very passionate about the ocean and marine life conservation. I am especially making an effort to focus on reducing plastic pollution in our oceans. So much can be done by increasing awareness through social media. All of the different platforms allow people to stay connected, unite and work together as a whole.
I was also recently featured in the Sandy Hook Promise “Back to School Essentials” PSA. As a high school student myself, filming this PSA was a true challenge as the topic is extremely dark. The scene at the end when I was hiding in the bathroom stall was unfortunately too real and it’s terrifying to think that this type of violence happens today. I’d like to use my voice and encourage kindness and make positive changes in our community. The elements I’d like to continue sharing are the importance of “knowing the signs”, education on mental health, and spreading kindness. The PSA expresses the sad reality of this generation, and how we must make changes and speak up in order to keep our future safe.
GLITTER: What do you like to do on your free time?
SYMERA: I am now a Freshman in high school, so when I’m not on set, and I’m usually studying and doing schoolwork. I also love to do swim, surf, do aerial silks, hula hoop, read, and hang out with my friends.
GLITTER: Best advice you were ever given?
SYMERA: The best piece of advice I’ve ever been given was from my mom. She told me that, no matter what life throws at you, stay positive, persevere, and keep moving forward. Whatever curveballs come at you, tackle it, find the good, and then “onto the next.” Be like a shark, always moving forward because sharks don’t swim backwards.
GLITTER: Glitter has a Celebrity #SelfLoveCampaign, and we want to know, what’s self-love mean to you?
SYMERA: Self-love means embracing everything about yourself and loving the things that make you different. It’s also about believing in yourself, being grateful and following your passion. I love Lizzo and I think she does an amazing job of portraying “self-love.”
GLITTER: What would be a dream role for you?
SYMERA: So many dream roles come to mind. I know Madea has “retired,” but I’d love for her to come back so I could work on an amazing comedy with Tyler Perry. I also enjoy dramatic roles and action movies, so I would love to be cast in a Spider-Man/Spider-Verse movie! He is my favorite MARVEL superhero, so this would be an incredible experience and a dream come true!
GLITTER: Favorite places to travel?
SYMERA: I love to travel, especially to places by the coast. I love the ocean and marine life, and that’s where I spend much of my time. I recently went to Australia and had the absolute time of my life! I spent a lot of time at Freshwater Beach surfing and swimming in the beautiful ocean, I climbed the Sydney Harbour Bridge, went fossicking for opals in the Outback, visited the Wild Life Sydney Zoo and the National Zoo in Canberra, and of course did a lot of shopping in Sydney!
GLITTER: Coffee or Tea?
SYMERA: I love tea! It’s such a relaxing way to wake up in the morning. I’ll just hop out of bed and drink some tea to get my day started.
GLITTER: Favorite fashion indulgence?
SYMERA: Mini-Backpacks are my favorite fashion indulgence. They are extremely handy, comfortable, and stylish!
GLITTER: Any projects you can tell us about that you’re working on next?
SYMERA: Right now, I am focusing on Team Kaylie. We filmed a total 20 episodes for Season 1. Netflix dropped Part 1 in September 2019, and then Part 2 on December 2nd. Part 3 will probably drop sometime early 2020. I hope all of you guys love the show as much as I do!
GLITTER: How can fans follow you?
SYMERA: People can follow me on Instagram. My handle is @symerajackson.