Andy Allo

Andy Allo

Tiziano Lugli
Andy Allo

Andy Allo as Lieutenant Wendy Seager on NBC's Chicago Fire

Lieutenant Wendy Seager
Andy Allo and Paulo Costanzo

Andy Allo as Nora and Paulo Costanzo as Matteo on Prime Video's Upload

Liane Hentscher
Fill 1
Fill 1
March 22, 2022
In The Mix

Andy Allo's Flow State

The actress and musician finds her rhythm in two disparate roles — as Nora in Prime Video's Upload and as Lieutenant Wendy Seager on NBC's Chicago Fire.

When Cameroon-born Andy Allo moved with her family to Sacramento at age thirteen, she had to adapt to a new culture — and American accents.

"Growing up in Africa gave me the ability to see things from so many different angles," says Allo, who stars as tech "angel" Nora in Prime Video's futuristic Upload and also plays Lieutenant Wendy Seager on NBC's Chicago Fire. "It also began my training as a chameleon, to be able to absorb different customs and have an appreciation for them."

She began her career as a singer-guitarist in college — she's since released three albums — and spent a few years as part of Prince's New Power Generation. In some of her earliest roles, she played a musician — on The CW series Black Lightning and in Pitch Perfect 3.

Allo credits touring with Prince for tools she uses when acting. "When you're onstage, there are no take-backs. That's it. You've got to be in the moment and fully present. That's my work ethic and the way I approach being an actor. Even though there's a lot of downtime on set, when you're called upon, that's the moment you step up."

While filming season two of Upload — which is now streaming and opens with Nora living off the grid — Allo took a break from social media.

"I ended up being off it for about four months. Initially, there was that anxiety, a bit of FOMO: 'I don't know what the heck is going on with my friends! How can I communicate with anybody or share what I'm doing?' Once that wore off, it was like, 'I've got a lot of time on my hands. I should focus on working.' I was living like Nora, and it was really cool just stepping away and being able to come back with fresh eyes."

Her Upload and Chicago Fire characters are different, yet Allo feels a kinship with each. She shares Nora's ability to see the best in others, possesses some of Wendy's confidence and — like both — stays open to new ideas.

Allo uses water as a simile for her method in art and life. "It's like watching a stream or a river: if there's a rock in the way, the water goes around and finds another route. Whether I'm working on music or acting or other artistic things, that's how I approach it."

This article originally appeared in emmy magazine issue #2, 2022, under the title, "Flow State."

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