SUMMER SCOOP: China Anne McClain Talks About Her New Disney Series A.N.T. FARM

China Anne McClain
In the Disney series A.N.T. FARM, China Anne McClain plays a musical genius who must navigate high school with a bunch of other gifted youngsters as they pursue their passions.
What is A.N.T FARM about?
China:  A.N.T. Farm is a show basically about high school and the A.N.T. program, and A.N.T. stands for Advanced Natural Talent. Everyone in the program is very gifted in whatever it is they do.  I’m a musical prodigy.  You know, mathematics and arts.  So the characters are 11 and 12 and the high schoolers don’t want them there. And my character is China Sparks.  She is very complicated.  She doesn’t care about what the high schoolers think about her.  She is just going to make the most of her high school experience.

Are there any similarities between you and your character Chyna?
China:  There are some similarities.  I can play some of the instruments she does.  But generally not all of them.  I guess I am kind of complicated in a way.  Not as much as she is.  But I really love her.  I see some similarities between us.
In your mind, what would be the one word you would describe your character with — what does she embody?
China:  Confidence.  She doesn’t care what anyone thinks about her. She is who she is and she’s okay with that.  I love that about her.  She’s not seeking to be liked.  She just doesn’t want to be bullied.

How big an age difference is there between you and your character?
China:  My character Chyna Sparks is 11 years old and I’m 12.  So there’s not a big difference, but I’m about to turn 13.  There’s not a big difference between 11 and 12.

What’s your biggest challenge in portraying Chyna?
China:  I think the recordings.  Because after learning some words and stuff, you have to go to the recording studio and make a song, and I think that is probably the hardest part.  But all the rest of it is fine.  I mean, the cast — I love them so much.  We go and do stuff together.
What instruments do you actually play, not just the ones that Chyna can play?
China:  I play guitar, the bass, piano and a little violin right now. Violin is one of her big instruments.

Did you know any of the other cast members before working on this show together?
China:  I did actually.  I knew my co-stars Sierra McCormick and Jake Short.  We actually did another Disney pilot together.  So we knew each other, and Sierra and I knew each other way back.  We did HANNAH MONTANA together.  So it was really fun getting to work with them again.
How do you feel about working with the older actors?
China:  It’s kind of like, whatever.  We’re almost the same age.  Sierra and Jake are 13.  But it’s fine. We’re all about the same age and we act the same age.  So it’s fun.  It’s not really a big difference.

What can you say about the other characters — the other A.N.T. kids?
China:  Jake is supposed to be like the artistic genius. Like making sculptures and that kind of stuff and he [change to he’s] very artistic.  I love that about him.  And Sierra, every time I forget my lines, she remembers them.

Do they have you play any instruments on the sound set?
China:  Most of it is dubbed.  I mean, like some of the stuff I can’t play.  So just to be safe, it’s dubbed.  But the singing is all me.  It’s fun to be able to do that.  I enjoy the singing.

What would you like viewers to know about your character Chyna that may not be obvious in the first episode?
China:  She loves her family.  Her family is very support of her.  Like her brother, Cameron.  He loves her.

Do you think that the love and support of Chyna’s family grounds her?
China:  Oh yeah.  She’s always grounded by her family.  Her family seems like, if she gets out of line, they would bring her back in quickly.  So I love that about her.

If this show were to attain the same kind of success as HANNAH MONTANA, how would you feel about that?
China:  I would be lucky.  But it could never be the same.  Nobody could do what Miley [Cyrus] did ’cause she did something incredible.  If I have half the success of her show, I’d be happy.
The new fun family series A.N.T. FARM premieres on Friday, June 17th at 8:30PM on the Disney Channel. Find out why the kids are going to be talking about this series all summer!

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