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Conversations with the Inspiring Megan Lee

Today we’d like to introduce you to Megan Lee.

So, before we jump into specific questions, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I grew up loving to perform and make people smile. Being a physically small girl and a minority, I always felt I needed to stand out by having a big voice and expressing myself because I would often get made fun of being tiny as a child. Movies and music were my biggest interests and passions and from the very young age of 9, I knew that I wanted to be an entertainer. I talked to my mom about how I could be an actress just like my favorite characters on TV but realized that there weren’t that many that looked like me. My mom had no knowledge or experience in the entertainment industry but I was so adamant about being an actress and not only representing my fellow Asian Americans but also making a positive impact and influence using a larger platform/stage. I persuaded her to take me to an audition for an agency after surfing the internet for LA talent agencies. From there, I was able to gain experience and build my resume through various sets on commercials, short films and television shows. At thirteen, I have truly learned the difficulties and sacrifices to make an actress, especially being a young, female, minority. All I wanted to do was work as it didn’t even feel like work ever but back then, there weren’t as many opportunities for young Asian American actors as there are today.

When YouTube came around, I realized that I don’t need to wait for an audition or to be casted to pursue my passions when things are slow. So, I got my family’s old camcorder and started making YouTube videos in my childhood bedroom. My passion for music and singing let me express myself in ways that really empowered me and to my surprise, empowered many others through the platform. I started to see growth in my numbers and posted more music content on my channel. At fifteen, I hit a roadblock with my identity. I wanted to learn more about my culture and background especially knowing how different I am than all of my other non-Asian coworkers on movie sets. I wanted to fully accept myself and my culture and to do that was to go to South Korea with my family and I ended up participating in a singing competition televised show that brought closer to my roots. After gaining exposure from the show I got signed to a label in Korea and ended up living there for almost four years. I learned how to read, write and speak Korean and gained both professional and personal experiences while living there. Before I realized that I wanted to move on from my label I got casted to appear as the lead for a Nickelodeon show called “Make It Pop” produced by Nick Cannon and Tommy Lynch. It was one of the best and coolest experiences of my life so far and it was literally my dream job to sing, dance and act all in one project. After the show ran for two seasons, I continued to make more YouTube content, perform, appear in other tv shows and projects. I also released my first debut album called “I AM” and wrote more songs for other Korean artists like Taeyeon and Baekhyun. Today, I’m still driven to work harder and grow to be a more well-rounded songwriter and grounded actress. My journey was long and eventful but I’m proud to call it unique and full of blessings. I’m super excited for what’s more to come in the future!

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
It almost never was a smooth road. Social Media is made to make everyone’s lives and careers look put together and perfect. That is was media is for, a highlight reel. Some struggles were dealing with identity and my voice condition. I haven’t talked about it too much but I have struggled with spasmodic dysphonia and muscle tension dysphonia since I was around 19 years old. It was mostly caused by overworking my voice and bad mental health. I always found myself to be a very positive person but then realized that I have been suppressing many emotions and ignoring the real problems, which of course is never healthy. I’ve now realized the importance of my mental health as I went into my early twenties and really encouraged everyone to go an extra mile to take care of their mental health; whether that is going to therapy, exercising, changing lifestyles, etc. For the women who are just starting their journey; my advice is to be real with yourself and those around you. As simple that might sound, I found many people get lost on their journey and lose track of why they started in the first place. Stay grounded, focused and don’t try to be anyone else but you.

We’d love to hear more about your work and what you are currently focused on. What else should we know?
I’m a singer-songwriter and actress born and raised in Los Angeles. I write my own original music that I make content for on YouTube and release on Spotify and Itunes. I also write for various Kpop artists as well! I think what sets me apart from other Television/Internet celebrities is that my career background is extremely diverse. It lives in singing and acting but with my experiences in the Kpop industry, having my own TV show on an American cable network and building a following/brand online really make me kind of a weird but interesting stew kind of entertainer gal haha. Oh, and I also stream on Twitch and play music and video games.

Who do you look up to? How have they inspired you?
My mom is my biggest inspiration. She keeps me grounded when I could have easily been washed out by the dark sides of the entertainment industry; especially knowing that I started out as a child entertainer. She taught me many valuable life lessons and has always been my rock through EVERYTHING. She is my best friend, mentor and business partner and I would LITERALLY not be here without her.

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