Courtesy of an animated princess who doesn’t back down from challenges worthy of a knight, 12-year-old Akira Golz of Dutchess County, New York is set to reach more than 90 million television viewers beginning Monday morning!
Golz provides the voice of Nella in Nickelodeon's brand-new animated preschool series, Nella the Princess Knight, debuting Monday, Feb. 6, at 10 a.m. (ET/PT) on Nick USA. You can watch an episode now at www.nickjr.com and on the Nick Jr. App.
“It’s really exciting,” said Golz, a Broadway veteran who also sings in the cartoon. “I love Nella so dearly. And, I can’t wait to watch it.”
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Nella is an unconventional 8-year-old who possesses the royal qualities of a princess, like compassion and grace, while also embodying the courage and determination of a brave knight.
Golz’s journey to Nella’s kingdom can be traced to when she was 5-years-old and attending Angie’s Gymnastics in Dutchess. The instructor told Rutledge repeatedly that Golz, while waiting her turn to participate, would sing and dance.
The instructor asked Rutledge if she ever considered acting auditions for Golz. Rutledge eventually contacted two modeling agencies, heard back from one and Golz began modeling.
That led to acting auditions and appearances in a range of print and television ads for, among others, Honda and Olive Garden. Golz’s voice has also been heard on Nickelodeon’s Dora the Explorer and Peter Rabbit. From Sept. 1, 2015 to Jan. 1, 2017, she appeared on Broadway in Matilda.
Golz’s mother, Wyonna Rutledge, said she is experiencing pride and joy over her daughter’s latest theatrical accomplishment. Nickleodeon and Rutledge declined to say where in Dutchess the family lives.
“We didn’t think it would get to this point,” said Rutledge, whose husband, John Golz, is a former IBM employee who now works for GlobalFoundries. “You hope that it happens.”
Golz has a 17-year-old brother, and Rutledge admitted that her daughter's success has left an impact on the family’s day-to-day routine.
“Everyone makes the sacrifices for things like this,” Rutledge said.
Golz and Rutledge stayed in New Jersey while the young actress appeared on Broadway and Golz was home-schooled. She continues to record for episodes of Nella, but with a flexible schedule that has allowed her to return home and to her seventh-grade class in Dutchess.
Following its U.S. launch, Nella the Princess Knight in the spring will debut internationally, including on Nick Jr. UK & Ireland in May 2017.
Asked about her love of performing, Golz said, “something about it fills my heart with joy. I just love it so much. I don’t know how to explain it. I just feel excited when I perform and I don’t get that from anything else I do.”
Nella the Princess Knight debuts at 10 a.m. Feb. 6 on Nickelodeon USA.
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Original source: The Poughkeepsie Journal.
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