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Meet Raul Walder

Today we’d like to introduce you to Raul Walder.

Raul, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
My acting career started at a very young age in my home country, Venezuela. When I was about six years old, I began working as an actor in TV, film, and theater. After graduating from high school and working on several projects in my country, I had the opportunity to come to the US and expand my dramatic studies at the University of Miami theater conservatory.

Those four years of college at UMiami were an amazing experience! I’ve always believed in the importance of training and education – whichever path or career you may choose; and thus, my time there definitely helped me grow not only as an artist but also as an individual. During that time, I was also able to work and collaborate with award-winning directors and actors such as Moises Kaufman, Victor Lirio, Arturo O’Farrill, Caesar Samayoa, among others — and that was the best masterclass I could have asked for.

Soon after graduating college, the desire of expanding my horizons once again and moving to NYC or LA started roaming around my mind. I worked on a feature film called ‘Nereus’, which even though was shot in Florida, it had some of the cast members come from LA. After long conversations with my fellow actor friends and a short visit here to meet with agents and managers, I decided to make the move. I came to LA about two years ago and I’ve fallen in love with this amazing city since day one. In some strange way, this place has felt like home from the start — I say strange because so far LA is the city in the US where I’ve lived the least amount of time but felt most connected with. However, I’m sure it has to do with how much it reminds me of my childhood city, Caracas. The mountains, the ocean, and the melting pot of different cultures excite and make me proud to be a part of this city!

Has it been a smooth road?
No, it definitely has not been a smooth road. However, I must clarify that I say that with pride. I think that regardless of the path you choose for yourself, we all face challenges. These challenges, though, are no more than learning opportunities and reminders to keep fighting for what we want.

Personally, one of the biggest struggles I had to go through, like any immigrant, was leaving everything behind – my home, my family, my friends, in order to seek for better opportunities. Opportunities that I am very grateful for, but that nonetheless entailed hard and difficult moments.

Likewise, it is not a secret that the entertainment industry can be a very harsh and difficult industry at times, especially for an actor. The constant amount of rejection can sometimes blind your perspective about yourself, and make you doubt the value of all that you’ve been working for. Therefore, I find it crucial to practice meditation and take a moment each day to reconnect with who you are and your inner purpose. That keeps me sane and keeps me motivated!

All that being said though, I feel extremely lucky for all the opportunities and blessings I have had along the way. From the unwavering support of my family to the enlightening advice of mentors I’ve found along the way, and everything that has brought to where I am at today — I couldn’t have asked for a more fulfilling road so far. Can’t wait for what’s to come!

Is our city a good place to do what you do?
As an actor from Venezuela, being able to live in LA and work in the entertainment industry here was always the ultimate goal. Hollywood is known worldwide as the film mecca, and it’s without a doubt one of the best places to be for any actor. Taking that into consideration, the industry here is also incredible competitive and hard to break into.

Therefore, my only recommendations to anyone starting out as an actor out there would be: 1) Get training – it doesn’t matter if you get a BFA at an ivy league college or go to a small acting studio somewhere but come prepared. And 2) Do extensive research and visit the cities that you are looking to move out too before you make the move – NYC and LA, for instance, are such different cities and so immensely special, each in their own way. Find out where you feel good and inspired, and go there!

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Image Credit:

Dennis Mencia, Itziar Martinez, Josephine Bauza, Georges Padey, Omara Fernanda Garcia, Jonathan Jose Quintana, Diego Vicentini, Christian McGaffney, Steve Wilcox, Ruben Guevara, Kelly Mack, Jorge Borrelli

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