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Meet Noah Reilly

Today we’d like to introduce you to Noah Reilly.

Hi Noah, it’s an honor to have you on the platform. Thanks for taking the time to share your story with us – to start maybe you can share some of your backstory with our readers?
Oh boy, where do I start? When it came to acting, when I was younger, I always struggled with following my head or following my heart. Despite being in theatrical productions since 2011 and a member of the National Speech and Debate association since my youth– for the longest time, I didn’t view acting as a viable career choice. Slowly, over time acting and performance became more and more prevalent as something I was destined to do. I remember one of my mentors telling me, in regards to doing what I love versus doing what I thought was smart: “Doing what you love is the smart thing to do.” – I thought that was crazy! But lo and behold, she was right. I truly believe if you are meant to be an artist, your craft never leaves you and will always find a way to come to the surface. Clearly, I was that case. I am from the same small town in Tennessee as Emmy and Tony-winning actress Cherry Jones. I distinctly remember crossing paths with her on my 18th birthday while at the dog park down the street from my childhood home. She told me a piece of wisdom I’ll always keep close. And that was to get out of my comfort zone, keep moving forward, and always grow — and I couldn’t do that in my hometown. I took the advice to heart and moved out of my hometown to seriously pursue my craft. Cut to present day: I have worked on handfuls of popular TV shows, got my SAG-AFTRA credits, and booked my film debut; a major motion picture from Paramount Studios with an Oscar-winning director. Unfortunately, the title is still embargoed. My hard work and training seem to be paying off, however, because I am also attached to a new film shooting on location in Chicago. Looks like following my heart is working out for me!

Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
I wouldn’t say my path to where I am today was rough, as others have had it harder, but it definitely wasn’t easy! Ask any artist…. acting as a career is not something you do because it is easy. You do it because there is nothing else you would rather be doing. Acting is not a hobby or a side hustle, it is an art form. So sure, there were some obstacles. Mainly when it came to finding my people, friends, and supporters. In the past, I had several former peers who ostracized me for “taking acting too seriously,” which does not make sense to me. How can that be possible? Acting classes and schools can have insecure or toxic people looking to project onto others. I didn’t know everything at the beginning of my journey but ended up learning major life lessons from every bump in the road. The people you surround yourself with can have a major impact, so it’s important to protect your energy. I am grateful to have found a phenomenal group of fellow artists that support me and have my back.

Appreciate you sharing that. What else should we know about what you do?
One thing that I am proud of that I believe sets me apart from others is my ability to navigate my artistry in a unique and healthy manner. Acting is completely psychological and can take a toll on actors if not executed carefully. Throughout my experiences, I have had to make sure that I stay as safe as possible during performances. And I’m not talking physical danger. I am a Meisner-based actor and with that foundation, I act truthfully under given circumstances to get deeper into my character. Separating myself from every person I portray is critical. They are not me. However, when I am performing, my mind may know that, but my body does not. Our bodies are constantly in a fight, flight, or freeze mentality. That’s life! But I have worked very hard to adapt my pedagogy to suit my style of acting and have learned how to use my mind while performing to console and protect my body. I believe that is something every actor should know how to do! I know I can put on a good show and still come out on the other side physically and emotionally unaltered and safe.

Do you have any memories from childhood that you can share with us?
Every year, my hometown hosts the world’s biggest catfish festival! They hold huge parades, a carnival, car shows, a pageant, and so much more. I got to go to all of this every year. It was always so fun to go with friends, stay out late, and win big prizes. It wasn’t until very recently that I learned why they hold this festival. Apparently, as tradition has it, this is done to honor the great Catfish god. They hold the parade, carnival, etc. to appease the Catfish God so he does not flood the Kentucky lake and wash away the local Wal-mart! Although I am not a strong believer in this folklore, I couldn’t help but notice that it rained every year during the week of the festival. Coincidence? I think not!

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Image Credits:

Jamaal Murray, Noah Way

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