With memorable turns on hit TV series 1883 and Women of the Movement, this up-and-coming actress and Chicago native has us eagerly waiting to see what comes next.
From studying at The Second City and Upright Citizens Brigade to landing roles on shows like NCIS, Nashville, and star-filled new hits 1883 and Women of the Movement, Chicago native Amanda Jaros (@amandajaros) is proving herself to be one to watch in the entertainment biz. Here, the actor, writer and activist shares her passion for performance and what drives her to give back.
How did growing up in Chicago help you prepare for this career?
The first musical I ever saw was at Drury Lane Theatre. As a kid, I was mesmerized by the chandeliers, big stage and wonderful performances. Later, I attended Second City’s improvisation and sketch summer programs, which added a lot to my comedy experience at the time.
What did you enjoy most about making 1883 and Women of the Movement?
I loved being part of the important message that Women of the Movement conveys. It was the first time that the true story of Emmett Till’s murder and trial was able to be told in this creative capacity, with a big budget. Filming 1883 was an entire adventure. You really begin to feel like you are on a caravan journeying west in the 1880s.
What is your dream project?
I’d love to play a character in the J.R.R. Tolkien universe or be in something like Downton Abbey. But really, I love any type of period piece; filming Women of the Movement and 1883 definitely fit the dream project category.
You’re active in a variety of causes—why is it important for you to give back?
When I started my career, I knew I didn’t want the world to revolve around me. It’s not always convenient to volunteer time or financial resources, but knowing it makes a difference in someone’s life... it’s worth the sacrifice. I’ve specifically volunteered with After Hours Ministry (Los Angeles) and Rahab’s Rope (India). Both are anti-trafficking organizations but serve very different communities. It shows that sex trafficking happens around the world—even in the U.S.
What do you miss most about Chicago?
Of course, I miss my family... but the city itself is filled with amazing food, architecture and experiences. I miss really good pizza, beautiful autumns (the leaves don’t change colors much in Los Angeles), great theater (Steppenwolf, Goodman, Chicago Shakespeare, Drury Lane) and Grant Park. I always get a sense of nostalgia any time I’m back in town. Looking forward to my next visit!