At YouthMundus & Inner Voice Artists, we aim to not only be a platform for music, film and global change, but for the artists and global changemakers who create them.
Our Artist Spotlight series aims to create a space for discovery of new, budding global talent, while simultaneously offering you an exclusive glimpse into their creative process.
In this week’s edition, we’re extremely excited to feature Rae Jordan a self started Caribbean-American Actress who has be been pursuing a growing career in film and television.
Atlanta native, Rae Jordan, recently graduated New York University in the Fall of 2018. In less than four years she received a dual degree in Acting and Africana Studies! She has worked on various film productions such as “Fatal Attraction” and “Halt And Catch Fire.” Jordan unknowingly began crafting her acting career at an early age by performing in various childhood school and church productions. As she reached adolescence she discovered the therapeutic nature that the arts could provide in her somewhat hectic life.
This week YouthMudus chatted with Rae Jordan about her life that lead up to her current career as an actress and the responsibility she feels now in telling other people’s stories.
What inspired you to pursue acting? What were the challenges you overcame in this? Going through the insecurity, varying energy levels, and mood swings that come with being a pre-teen, and teenager, I began to channel my emotions into writing poems, songs, and eventually, some small plays. Joining groups of other arts, such as the Teen Ensemble at the Alliance Theatre in Atlanta, or at the performing arts high school I attended (DeKalb School of the Arts), I found a community that I felt comfortable expressing my artistic voice around, and then I realized that I was not alone.
Growing up in a home with two working parents, busy siblings, and loads of commitment, I often found myself simply moving through life, following commands, and doing what I was expected to do. However, fully dedicating myself to the arts world provided me with a space to express my feelings at all extremes.
What inspires you and your creative process? Though my life’s journey has constantly been affected by outside influencers (be it finances, school, resources, current events, etc), much of my creative process has stemmed from fears working within me. Anyone who knows me would immediately describe me as type A, and a busy body. I constantly overload myself with work, school, social commitments—anything to
keep myself occupied. I don’t like to feel like time is being wasted, and am constantly searching for ways to be “productive”. However, being an artist has provided me with an outlet that is self fulfilling, yet productive nonetheless. When I’m in front of a camera, on stage, or behind a microphone — all of my daily worries disappear. I’m simultaneously creating a performance for public consumption while also giving myself a chance for an introspective view, a brief moment of oneness with myself before returning to the hustle and bustle of the world around us.
What is the connection between acting and social justice? Why? I think of every performance as my chance to tell a story. With acting, that story usually isn’t my own, but personal experience can make these stories even more powerful. I remember once, during my senior year of high school, I was cast in a production of the one act play “Broken” written by New York based playwright Paris Crayton III in which I was playing a teen mother suffering within a domestic violence situation. While that story wasn’t true to my life in reality, that experience made me realize that every character provides a window into SOMEONE’S reality, and understanding that will help you to be a more informed, and outspoken citizen of this world.
All my life, I’ve been one to speak up for people. I constantly found myself in leadership roles in school and extracurricular activities. Many would say my nature of authority comes from my type A personality, but I would look deeper and say that my initiative stems from wanting to provide a voice for the voiceless. I’ve been the shy kid who ate lunch alone. I’ve been the kid who knows the right answer but isn’t confident enough to say it out loud. I’ve been the only black person in the class. I’ve been the only woman in the room. I’ve been the only queer person in the neighborhood. I’ve been the only artist in the family.
What’s been the most rewarding part of being an artist for you? Do you have any advice for future artists? Intersectionalities have taught me a lot about the importance of representation, and recognizing the lack thereof in some cases. Writers for stage and screen present stories they haven’t heard or seen, traditional ideas reimagined, and someone has to be the storyteller. Now, I realize that storytelling may not sound like as much of a traditional career in comparison to law, medicine, business or any of the other fields that many parents of artists try to push as an alternative, but I also realized that every piece of the puzzle is necessary. We all have to do what we are meant to do, what brings us joy and what we excel in, in order to fulfill ourselves, and in turn exude our best and truest selves!
I would advise anyone pursuing acting, or anything artistic to keep yourself motivated! That may mean taking classes, auditioning for student or short films in between paid gigs, writing your own work, supporting your friends, or all of the above. And part of keeping yourself motivated is keeping others interested! Build a brand! Share your work, keep your audience.
To learn more about me and my personal journey as an actress from New York City to Atlanta Georgia, follow me on Instagram @black__ewe (two underscores) or check out my website www.rae-jordan.com
Thank you for your continuous support and love,
Lots of love,