Hailing from New York, Meg Donnelly’s introduction into the industry started at an early age. Growing up in front of the camera, the starlet was a natural performer, attending prestigious stage schools across the state and subsequently landing her first Netflix role aged 11. Since then, she has barely stopped to catch her breath, working continuously to get to where she is today, releasing her debut single “Smile” and performing alongside The Jonas Brothers, Avril Lavigne and Alessia Cara to name a few.
Currently starring in the CW’s hotly anticipated Supernatural prequel – The Winchesters – the rising star proves herself as Mary, a hardened hunter grappling with the dark forces which surround her. On a lighter note, Donnelly was recently seen starring alongside fan-fave Olivia Rodrigo in High School Musical: The Musical: The Series while also reprising as Addison in the Disney Channel original movie, Zombies.
Currently working on new music, the star continues to advocate for mental health across her social platforms and took time out of her jam-packed schedule to discuss her whirlwind journey and the importance of sharing her experience.
Head below to step into Meg Donnelly’s world…
Hi Meg, how are you? Where are we speaking to you from right now?
I am currently on set filming “The Winchesters” in New Orleans! I am having so much fun and love the amazing cast, crew and fan reaction.
As a mental health advocate and actress, talk to us about the importance you find in a realistic representation of mental illness and disorders in media.
As a young girl, I was confused and felt like I had to hide my anxiety and panic attacks. I felt isolated from my friends, embarrassed and concerned they would think I was different. Performing was an outlet for me. My theatre group and teachers were my safe space. I believe it is vitally important that I speak out on mental health issues so young people know they are not alone and they can find activities and like-minded people that give them comfort (as it is different for everyone). There must continue to be realistic representations of mental illness and mental disorders in the entertainment industry and social media so the stigma gets eradicated and people will feel less isolated and seek the care they need during their mental health struggles.
You are a Gen Z Disney Channel star! Were you into DComs and original movies when you were younger?
Oh yes, I grew up on them! High School Musical was the first one I watched! Cheetah Girls! Camp Rock! I was hooked from there. My friends and I used to have watch parties. My dream as a young performer was to be in a musical DCOM and it came true when I booked the role of ‘Addison’ in the Disney Zombies Franchise. I am so blessed!
We are very excited to see you star in The Winchesters, the prequel series of the iconic Supernatural franchise! How was working alongside TV royalties like Jensen Ackles and Tom Welling?
Well, where do I start?! It has been amazing. They are great people and so easy to be around. They have been so gracious with their time and have guided their own acting experiences, which has been invaluable to the cast. Jensen was there every day when we shot the pilot and we could not be more grateful for that. His insights about ‘Supernatural’ have been invaluable, his support is unwavering, and his humour is infectious. We had so much fun, but at the same time working hard to create an amazing show for the ‘Supernatural’ fans!
You started your career at a very young age, was there ever a time when you didn’t see yourself working in the entertainment world?
No. I have to admit there were times after a gruelling audition process and rejection that I had to take time to regroup. But I knew, whether it was acting, singing and/or dancing, performing is what I wanted to do. I love bringing a character to life, and the rush you feel singing and dancing in front of a live audience is amazing.
Your schedule seems incredibly busy, is there any new music brewing? Whenever I get a chance, I am in the studio. I’ve been experimenting with new sounds and lyric concepts. I love the creative process. I am hoping that I will have something to share shortly.
In Zombies, your character is a preppy half-girl, half-alien teenager. Are you a fan of the horror genre?
Yes and no! I am more of a fantasy/sci-fi fan; but every once in a while, I get up the nerve to watch scary movies with my friends.
You have now starred in two completely different musicals on the small screen; do you have any plans to perform a musical on the stage?
I would love that! Growing up a theatre kid in New York City, being in a Broadway show would be a dream come true!
What do you hope the next 10 years hold for you?
Well, I hope I am still playing “Mary” in The Winchesters! Along the way, I hope I am fortunate enough to continue to play strong, inspirational characters in feature films, television or theatre that move people, especially young fans. It means so much to me when I hear their stories about how I, or my characters, have helped them through difficult times. Additionally, I do want to get on that stage to perform my original music and dance choreography to supportive fans. It would be a thrill to see them having fun with their friends and singing along with me!