Dascha Polanco – How she grew with her character

A bittersweet goodbye to ‘OITNB’

Dascha Polanco of ‘Orange Is the New Black’ on Netflix

Q: Is it sad saying goodbye to your character of inmate Daya Diaz after seven years on “Orange Is the New Black”?

A: Yes. I mean, it’s bittersweet and moments of, like, I’m ready to spread my wings and move on to the next project. And there’s also moments of like – you know, there’s a comfort zone when you’re doing a character and you start learning them more and more and discovering new layers of their (personality) is always exciting. So that definitely I will miss because after a while, you tend to just like co-exist with them.

Q: Are you satisfied with how her storyline turned out?

A: Yeah. I mean, there’s moments where I wished there was more. It’s a large cast and there’s only so much that they can do with who they choose to (service). So I definitely would have liked to see more of a story … . From the beginning to the end, I got to be present and not present and have moments of just having a broad range of emotions … . So I’m content with that.

Q: Did you find yourself growing as an actor as you took the journey with the character?

A: Yeah, I think that I grew as an actor in the sense that I became more confident and realized that I was given the opportunity to do this role because I deserved to do this role and only I could do Daya, so I had to own that. There was a point where I was like, “I have to own this.” It’s not like, “Hey, lucky me for getting …” No, you and only you can play this character and you were given this opportunity for seven years, so play with as much material as they can give you.

George Dickie

George Dickie

George Dickie has been a features writer for Gracenote/Tribune Media Services since 1989, when “Hee-Haw” was still on the air and George “Goober” Lindsay was his first interview. His early interviews ranged from Jim Henson and Dick Van Dyke to Phil Collins and the Dixie Chicks.

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