Vanessa Marano stars as Bay Kennish—a privileged, eccentric daughter of a former third-baseman—in ABC Family’s Switched At Birth. In the first season, Bay discovers her bloodtype does not match her parents and leads her down a path to discover she was switched at birth. While Bay grew up in an upper class neighborhood, the real Bay Kennish grew up in a single-parent household in a working class neighborhood. The winter season finale left Bay and Emmett’s relationship in shambles when Emmett admits cheating on Bay with Simone, Angelo fleeing from the country to avoid deportation, Kathryn’s memoirs are ready for the publishers, and Daphne’s relationship with Wilke ends as Wilke will be shipped off to boarding school.
I was one of a handful of bloggers offered a chance to talk to Vanessa Marano during a recent Q&A session about Switched at Birth. Vanessa talked about the challenge of learning sign language, her so-called influence on her real life younger sister’s career and of course many teasers about the show.
Vanessa had to learn sign language when her character started dating Emmett but did having a language professor as a father or a background in other languages help? According to Vanessa, “Absolutely not. Absolutely not.” although she’s “a visual learner so [she] found it easier than learning another [language].”
Vanessa’s younger sister, Laura Marano, stars as Ally in Disney channel’s Austin & Ally but how much influence did Vanessa have on Laura’s career? Vanessa was hit by the acting bug at the tender age of 6 and after hounding their mother for a few years, Vanessa met with an agent while then 5-years-old Laura tagged along. As Vanessa recalls: “[Laura] was just there and adorable and funky, and said these words, ‘I don’t have an agent. Can you be my agent too?’” The agent had a hard time saying no to the request and thus began both of their careers.
As expected many of the questions were about Bay and Emmett’s relationship during the fall season. Vanessa said “there’s a lot of denial until finally the climactic scene of the premiere episode where she [Bay] just lets him have it, and that’s kind of the overall tone of the season is her [Bay] struggling with accepting what Emmett did.” She also shared that “Bay does come back with a boyfriend because the Bay that we all know and love does not stay single for very long” and that “a cute deaf girl comes into the mix.”
Make sure you tune in for the fall premiere of Switched at Birth on September 3 and watch new episodes Mondays at 8/7c! And while you’re waiting,watch all the episodes for free in ABC Family’s Full Episode Player!
Photo courtesy of ABC Family