Few scenes from the fifth season of “Orange Is the New Black” were as memorable as the coffee snorting scene between Pidge and Ouija. But in “Orange Is the New Black” fashion, this season’s drama was amped up as the prisoners took over. We talked with Miriam, who plays Pidge, about everything “Orange”!
How did you get your start in acting? When did you know you wanted to be an actress?
I’ve known I wanted to be an actor ever since I was about 5 or 6-years-old when I was in a church play. I loved the experience so much all I wanted was to be involved in any way I could. It was something I actively pursued and completely invested myself in.
How did you get your part on “Orange Is the New Black”?
My manager submitted me for the role of “Pidge” and I auditioned for it. I was a huge fan of the show and it was my vision to be on it.
What similarities/characteristics do you share with Pidge?
There are a couple of characteristics I share with Pidge. She’s very loyal and I’m very much like that. We both have a big heart, love to help others, and have a comedic streak. But we’re also very tough and strong when we need to be. Pidge is the bomb.
Have you created a backstory for your character? If so, what is it? Do you think we’ll get a flashback for her?
It would be great for Pidge to get a backstory. Let’s see what the writers come up with! My ideas for her backstory would change every time I got a new script, so I don’t know. But, knowing who Pidge is, she probably did something for someone else and got herself caught up in a messy situation.
What was your favorite scene to shoot? The most difficult?
My favorite scene to shoot was also the most difficult to shoot and that is the coffee snorting scene. I really loved that entire episode and all the colors we got to see of Pidge, including the dynamics with her and Ouija. It was a lot of fun, but for technical reasons, very tricky to shoot.
What was the biggest takeaway for you this season? What do you hope fans took away from this season of “Orange” in particular?
Wow. So many things were takeaways for me, in different aspects. The biggest, however, is the power of your own voice. Once you realize how powerful your voice is – how capable you are – anything is possible. For the fans, I hope they have the same takeaway. I believe that one of the hardest things to do is live authentically, be who you are and fight against injustice regardless of what those around you may think. That’s really, really hard. At the end of season 5 I just hope fans learn something; about our society, about systemic racism, about privatized prison, about fighting for survival, about cultural barriers, about themselves. And that at the end of the day, we’re more alike than we are different.
Is there one character on “Orange” that you’d love to trade places with for a day?
Hmm, I was about to say no one because Pidge is enough. Ha! But Chang. She’s hilarious, tells it like it is and always seems to be having a great time amidst the chaos.
Now that this season has been out for a little while, what do you think of all this reception the show is receiving?
It’s truly incredible to witness the reception the show has received. I mean, there really isn’t anything like it on TV. I love that the show has a beautiful mix of comedy and drama while addressing serious social and political issues we’re currently facing. I love that it’s a real conversation starter and that is incredible.
Do you have any idea for where Pidge is going? What do you think she’s thinking as she leaves Litchfield?
Nope! No clue! I wish I knew where any of us are going. Pidge is probably thinking, “What did I do?,” “Maybe I should have stayed out of it,” “F**K!,” “Oh well, it is what it is,” “This can’t be good.” See the variety in those thoughts!? Ha! That’s Pidge for you.
What else are you working on that fans can expect to see you on in the future?
Fans can expect to see whatever comes my way. More of my writing – though they can read my style, beauty, and motivational posts on my site (themiriammorales.com). I have been writing a web series and working on a book. Being a published author has been a long-time goal of mine and I’m determined to make that happen real soon. And I’ve been auditioning a lot, so you never know what can come of that. There are few other ideas I’ve been toying with but just stay tuned!
For those who have been living under a rock, here is the trailer for season five of “Orange”!