|Birth name||Paula Apollo Anne Scharf|
February 16, 1967 |
Guilford, Connecticut, United States
|Occupation(s)||Singer-songwriter, dancer, voice actress|
Paula Apollo Anne Scharf-Daily (born February 16, 1967 in Guilford, Connecticut), better known by her stage name Apollo Smile, is a pop music singer-songwriter, voice actress and media personality. In the 1990s, Smile billed herself as The Live Action Anime Girl and was invited to several science fiction conventions as a guest.
Paula Scharf was born with a twisted hip tendon, leading her mother to enroll her in physical activity at the age of 3 to treat it. Thus from early childhood a trained dancer and gymnast, once she graduated Guilford High School in 1985, she went to study at the University of the Arts (Philadelphia) and then the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater in New York City. While introducing herself to a college student in New York he misheard Paula as "Apollo", and went on to say that it fit her despite being a male name as the Greek god Apollo "represents music, dance, light, and poetry", so she went with it. The latter part of her name came as a producer suggested an equally different surname, exploiting Scharf's oft-complimented smile. She legally changed her name to Apollo Smile in 1991.
An injury made Scharf opt to seek a singing career, working with producer Freddie "Groove Commander" Richmond. After contributing the song "Let's Rock" for A&M Records' soundtrack for the 1989 film Lost Angels, once a Los Angeles friend of Richmond visited his studio, she was impressed with the songs he was working with Smile, and smuggled a tape of theirs to a Geffen Records executive. Soon the A&R man went to New York to court Smile, and four months later she had signed with DGC Records. In 1990, Smile's song "Thunderbox" was featured on the soundtrack album for the Tom Cruise film Days of Thunder, and the following year she released a self-titled album, from which came the track . However, afterwards Smile was dropped along with most of DGC's signees.
By the mid-90s, Smile was attending conventions of anime, a lifelong fandom of hers. This led to her 1996 reinvention herself as the "Live Action Anime Girl", wearing skin-tight spandex clothing, with her blonde hair in pigtails tied off with pink bows. Her appearances usually showcased music concerts featuring her original upbeat music and demonstrations of her martial arts abilities. Soon she got to work as an anime voice actress,  and was called by the Sci-Fi Channel to host Anime Week in the summer of 1998. Other projects included a self-published comic book featuring herself as the central character, and the voice of Ulala in the Space Channel 5 video game series.
In 2001, Smile was doing stunt work and voice acting and wished to return to music, and joined Virginia-based "Atari rock" band Rockbot. Smile recorded one EP with Rockbot before leaving in 2003, while continuing her stunt and acting work. As Smile's mother became ill in 2006, she returned to her hometown to tend for her. The move brought Smile's career in dance and choreography back into focus. She got a job as a dance teacher at New Haven Ballet, as well as dancing schools in Killingworth and Guilford, and choreographed various high school dances ever since. Smile was also inspired by her father with Parkinson's disease to develop a routine of dancing exercises for elders with movement-impairing illnesses such as Parkinson's and arthritis.
Film and Television
- "Alana Payne" in Drop Dead Rock (film)
- "Apollo Smile" in Sidesplitters: The Burt & Dick Story (Short film)
- "Eva" in Division-Trade (Short film)
- "Skater #2 in Monk (Episode: Mr. Monk Takes Manhattan) (uncredited)
- Uptown Girls (film: doubling for Brittany Murphy)
- Hope and Faith (TV: doubling for Kelly Ripa)
- 24 (TV: doubling for Elisha Cuthbert)
- The Sopranos (TV)
- "Additional Voices' in Iria: Zeiram the Animation (OVA)
- "Coco Hearts" in Wild Cardz (OVA)
- "Karin Son" in Voltage Fighters: Gowcaizer the Movie (OVA)
- "Tracy" in Battle Arena Toshinden (OVA)
- "Nova" in Megas XLR
- "Ulala" in Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed
- "Ulala" in Sega Superstars Tennis
- "Ulala" in Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing
- "Ulala" in Space Channel 5 (Dreamcast, PlayStation 2)
- "Ulala" in Space Channel 5: Part 2 (Dreamcast, PlayStation 2)
- "Ulala" in Space Channel 5: Special Edition (PlayStation 2)
Apollo Smile (1991)
- "Dune Buggy"
- "I Want You To Love Me"
- "Love Comes Your Way"
- "Theme For All Nations"
- "Hymn To The Sun"
- "Temple Of Love"
- "Theme (Reprise)"
- "Dune Buggy (Bonus Remix)"
Dune Buggy (Promo CD Single) (1991)
- "Dune Buggy (Remix/Edit)"
- "Dune Buggy (Remix/Edit without Vocal Breakdown)"
- "Dune Buggy (LP Version)"
- "Dune Buggy (Full Drivin' Mix)"
- Remixes by Shep Pettibone
Wrecking Ball (1997)
- "Sunshine Slayer"
- "Love Comes Your Way"
- "Aim High Get Down"
- "Love Slave"
- "Tired Wings"
- "Shorty's Theme"
- "Girl's Got Rhythm"
- "Thanks From Apollo"
Love Kisses And Grenades (1999)
- "Battle Cry"
- "Feelin' Groovy"
- "Last Stand in Discoland"
- "Tite Pants"
- "Rainbow Rider"
- "Trigger Finger"
- "Call Me"
- "Going Back"
- "Live Wire"
- "Hikigane - Joe 90 Mix"
- "Lets Rock"
- Eder, Bruce. "Biography: Apollo Smile". Allmusic. Retrieved 16 April 2010.
- Applause for Apollo Smile: Accomplished Guilford Native Shares Talent
- Bredimus, Kate (6 February 2003). "The Scene". Richmond.com. Retrieved 7 July 2014.
- Animerica – Apollo Smile – Vision of Escaflowne – March 1997
- Bizarro Back Issues: Apollo Smile And The Dancing Starship (1998), Comics Alliance
- PUTTIN’ ON THE RITZ APOLLO SMILE-DAILEY
- "Apollo Smile". Official site. Archived from the original on May 8, 1999.
- Apollo Smile on IMDb
- "Apollo Smile". (chat transcript), Sci Fi Channel. September 4, 1998. Archived from the original on August 3, 2003.
- Coast-Con 1999 Interview
- "Anime Convention Personality of the Week". FansView.com. February 10, 1998. Archived from the original on January 18, 2000.
- Ask John: "What Ever Happened to Apollo Smile?" at AnimeNation