Emma Daniels wants to be an actress. As a bubbly 16-year-old growing up in Pretoria, South Africa, all she dreams about is going to Hollywood and having an acting career. She takes acting lessons, performs on stage and on television, even sings and dances. At such a young age, acting feels natural to Emma; it feels necessary.
Her mother never questioned her dream, encouraging it since the time Emma declared her ambitions when she was merely 2 years old. “Emma’s enthusiasm and determination was admirable,” said her mother. “Emma’s unmistakable determination to enjoy every moment of her life inspires me every day.”
Emma is also blind. She was born with microopthalmia, an eye abnormality in which one or both eyes are abnormally small. Emma’s eyes are about a third of the size they should be. There is currently no cure for microopthalmia that can restore eyesight.
When Emma was born blind, her mother made the decision to raise a child who is blind and not a blind child. Emma knew there would be physical challenges and difficulties living in South Africa where people with disabilities are still marginalized; however, Emma is not easily discouraged. She attends a school for the blind, acts in theatrical productions, and attends modern and classical dance classes during the week.
There have been many actors with physical disabilities and actors with intellectual disabilities but, Hollywood has never had an actor who was blind. The time is right for Emma to break into the industry, Hollywood is ready for a blind actress. A director working with Emma would be a pioneer, the first ever to work with an actress who is blind; all Emma needs is the opportunity to work with that director. This would push open the doors for others with disabilities to get the roles they deserve.
Emma has been accepted to attend Young Actors Camp in Hollywood, California. Young Actors Camp has transformed a college campus into The Actors Campus. She would be the first blind student ever to train at The Actors Campus. They are taking on the same commitment Emma’s mother has made to her – accept a passionate actress who is blind and not a blind girl who wants to act. Young Actors Camp is committed to being the first helpful step in her journey to Hollywood and pursuing her dream of becoming an actor.
“I’ve wanted to be an actor for as long as I can remember,” Emma said. “And this is an opportunity to show that people with disabilities can also participate.”
Emma is trying to raise money to attend Young Actors Camp in Hollywood, California in July to pursue her dream. Emma has been accepted to study at the Young Actors Camp, but cannot afford to get there or the tuition.
Contact The Young Actor’s Camp for more information:
975 W. Foothill Blvd. Claremont, CA 91711