WESTON, Conn. – After only the first season of her animated PBS show "Peg + Cat," Weston resident Hayley Negrin has been nominated for her first Daytime Emmy Award for her work.
“I’m the youngest person nominated this year,” said Hayley a fifth-grader at Weston Middle School. “It feels really good.”
Hayley, at age 11, is nominated for Outstanding Performer in an Animated Program, where she faces some stiff competition when the awards are handed out Sunday night in a ceremony in Beverly Hills, Calif.
She is up against the likes of stars Alan Cumming (from Broadway's "Cabaret" who is nominated for "Arthur" on PBS) and Ashley Tisdale (from "High School Musical" who is nominated for "Sabrina: Secrets of a Teenage Witch" on the Hub Network) as well as Sarah Bolt from Nickelodeon's "Peter Rabbit" and her co-star Dwayne Hill.
And along with the whole cast of the show, Hayley is looking at a possible second Emmy because "Peg + Cat" is nominated for Outstanding Preschool Children’s Animated Program.
Her family is just as excited for her. “We’re out of our minds excited,” said her mother Jara Negrin. “She’s a trouper.”
For the past two years, Hayley has spent five-and-a-half hours every other week in Brooklyn, N.Y., recording for the show. She is the voice of Peg, one of the title characters.
The series prompted a book of the same name in which Peg and Cat solve problems using math and songs.
Hayley had four interviews with the show's creators before she landed the job. “I was on vacation, and I got the call and they told me I got the show. I was really excited,” she said.
But it had taken her several years for her to persuade her parents to let her even begin acting. Hayley started asking at age 5, but she wasn’t taken on any interviews or auditions until she was 8.
“I did it as a kid,” said her mother, adding that she knew the pressures that her daughter would be under by working. She said she wanted to make sure that Hayley knew what she was getting into before she started acting seriously.
Even though Hayley enjoys being the voice of Peg, she says she wants to branch out into acting. As a voice actor, there isn’t much interaction with the other cast members, she said. Most of her fellow cast members record in Canada -- the Emmy ceremony will be the first time she meets them.
However, acting isn’t Hayley's whole life. She spends her down time playing lacrosse and basketball.
Her family makes sure that Hayley can do everything "Weston" as possible, her mother said, by keeping her as active with in her community through sports and other local activities.
“Anything that’s around Weston, and she’s there,” Jara said.
But as far as the Emmy’s are concerned, she’s already got the first part of her speech ready, “I’d like to thank my parents …”