Albeit being in the acting scene since her childhood and later appeared in several films and television series since 2007, McPhee showed the world what she is capable of through Karen Cartwright, the leading role of the hit musical drama television series, Smash. Passionate and far-sighted, McPhee is keeping herself occupied. When she is not making her rounds to radio stations to promote her latest studio album Hysteria, McPhee is seen saving the world in the latest season of CBS series Scorpion. One can only wait to see what McPhee is up to next.
With Scorpion Season 2 and your latest album Hysteria all coming out this September, how did you managed to juggle yourself as a singer, an actress and a song writer all at the same time?
Well, I actually wrote the songs for the album Hysteria long before I started shooting Scorpion Season 1. But nonetheless it's still has been challenging to schedule an album release that didn't conflict with my shooting schedule.
The album features collaborations with several other artists. How was the experience like?
I got the opportunity to go into a lot of different rooms with a lot of different writers. Sia, Ryan Tedder, and Isabella Summers are just a few great names I was fortunate to work with. Each time I step into a writing session you never know what the dynamic is going to be. I was fortunate to find a group of people like Isabella who I really got on with. I felt that this was one of the first times I really was stretched creatively and really enjoyed the writing process.
What were some of the themes you think you focused on in your music? Were there certain aims you had for this album?
I don't know that I set off to have specific theme on this album but just wanted my life to be the inspiration for that music. And like all music it generally; focuses around love, lust, loss and pain.
You first bust onto the scene as a singer. Was acting something that came organically?
I've been acting longer than I guess the general public is aware. I was always in love with theatre as a kid. I dabbled in commercials here and there and in high school I had an amazing drama teacher that really wanted her students to have a respect for the craft of acting. That's when I got more serious about it and studied theatre in college for 3 semesters before coming back to L.A. to pursue a career in entertainment.
When you first read the script for the Scorpion, what was the first thought that came into mind and made you want to be a part of it?
Reading the Scorpion pilot, my overall thought that this would cater to a thrill seeking audience but what drew me in more than anything was the relationships. This show is so full of the impossible but really at the end of the day the characters were all so interesting. I also felt that it was a completely ambitious pilot. And that is still true to this day during second season of Scorpion, where each episode we are tackling the impossible. I also loved seeing how this show has grown from the pilot to where it is now. It has something so unique on television that other shows do not have. We have drama, action and comedy all in one.
After working on Scorpion, what would you rather be? A genius outcast or a plain Jane?
Being a genius would be a lot of responsibility. I think I'd be happy being just like the real Paige. A smart cookie: street smart and learns quickly.
If you can reenact one film, what film would it be? What character would you have wanted to play?
If I could reenact one movie it would be Father of the Bride. I can watch that movie over and over again. And that relationship between both father and daughter is just so beautifully bitter sweet. I think that's the perfect ingénue role.
Growing up in the Hollywood scene, did it affect your sense of self?
Even though I grew up in L.A., I really didn't have a Hollywood upbringing. I grew up in the San Fernando Valley and although both of my parents were in entertainment industry, it wasn't really Hollywood. What I mean is my family worked in entertainment but by no means were Hollywood insiders rubbing elbows with movie stars and big wigs. In my view, I had a relatively normal upbringing. I had a very suburban lifestyle, playing in my neighborhood with all the neighborhood kids until it was time to come inside. So I don't really feel like my sense of self was affected by the Hollywood scene.
What do you fear most?
I guess two of my biggest fears are most likely missing out on things and opportunities of things I've dreamt about; losing out on things maybe and feeling a part of you not being fulfilled. I know that's kind of vague but that can apply to so many parts of my life.
What do you hope to achieve in this life time?
I’d like to achieve many things. But mostly beyond career stuff is love; to have a beautiful life full of love, kindness, family and integrity.
Stylist's assistant: Grace Wrightsell
Special thanks: Jessica Pierson, Allie Miller, Melissa Pursel, & Tamara Jacobs.