Today we’d like to introduce you to Ana Sofia Fehn.
Ana Sofia, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I spent my life dedicated to sports above all else, but it was never my end goal. Since I was as young as I can remember, I always wanted to be an actress. I played sports because I wanted to be like my brothers, but I performed because it made me feel more like myself, more happy, and more excited than anything else I had ever experienced. I put on shows for my family and friends, spent hours learning to imitate Jim Carey, and memorized every song and dance from Disney. As I became involved in theater, I realized this was not just a dream, but something I could accomplish if I worked towards it. I started taking acting classes in my local community and prepared monologues for audition work. As I got through high school, everyone thought I was planning on going to play college hockey. Despite the lack of approval from my father and a lot of administration/coaches, I decided to audition for different acting programs around the country for college. My dream, however, was USC’s School of Dramatic Arts. Not only was it in Los Angeles, but it was also an academically challenging school with an incredible reputation for the arts and inspiring established faculty. I knew once I stepped on campus for the first time I could not see myself anywhere else. After being accepted to several acting schools, I chose USC and moved to LA. It was during my freshman year, I realized just how hard this industry is. I knew no one, had no connections, and no concept of how to “make it.” I spent my time studying for classes, acting, trying to set up meetings (lots of un-replied emails for me), reading about the entertainment industry, and self-submitting. I ran around trying to absorb as much information as I could. I booked small music videos, started to get a feel for sets, and started to grasp the industry more. I learned the vicious cycle of needing an agent to book parts but needing to book parts to get an agent. I landed a Ford national car commercial, followed by a Taco Bell National Commercial. This introduced me to big names, including Jon Hamm who came to mentor me and offers advice on set (not just for commercials, but really much beyond this). I still did not have a single person looking to represent me but was able to audition and get on tape for CBS casting. A Casting Director there put me in touch with other people but still was not signed. I submitted to more agencies, and gained some traction, but only by small boutiques. I was unsatisfied and did not sign with anyone until I felt it was the right fit. I started getting involved on the modeling side and booked a Tommy Hilfiger Fashion show featuring Gigi Hadid’s collection. I was then featured in Vogue Spain and on Tommy Hilfiger’s page, which helped get my name around more than before. The next year, I signed with Abrams Artists Agency and booked a guest role on Freeform’s “Modern Family.” I also signed with a manager for modeling and encountered the opportunity to travel partnering with hotels globally. I am still with Abrams and continue to work on my acting while balancing two majors in school. I graduate this upcoming year and then will be head-first into acting, auditioning, and developing my passion for the arts.
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 has not been smooth at all. No agent would reply to me, everyone said I was too young or that I was talented but that they could not take on more clients. A manager over at 3 Arts wanted to sign me (who I was put in contact with through friend/actor Jonny Weston) but she did not have any more time to develop young talent. It was discouraging to hear that I could make it but that no one wanted to take the shot on me. I felt like I was not tall enough or skinny enough or good enough so many times; I learned to completely pick myself apart. It made me feel like no matter how hard I tried it just wasn’t what they wanted. However, by sticking through it I found my way into a lot of incredible opportunities and now understand everything happens for a reason. It helped me develop a thick skin and realize there are a whooooole lot of no’s before a single yes. For young women, I just want them to realize how tough this is. Some casting directors will look at you like a piece of meat and not even greet you. Some auditions you will kill and they will think it was trash. Sometimes, you will do everything right and it still won’t matter. The most important thing is to keep pushing through if you cannot see yourself doing anything else. If this isn’t your ultimate passion, it is not worth the hardship. You have to want it more than anything.
Please tell us more about what you do, what you are currently focused on and most proud of.
I specialize in acting, studying both film and television acting in school, as well as theater and voice-over work. I am most passionate about screen acting and enjoy period-piece acting in theater (ie: Victorian era, 20th century, restoration comedy). I also love modeling and have had the privilege of shooting with large names such as Keith David and Bryant Eslava (both featured in Vogue magazine). I am most proud of my dedication to not rushing my acting, realizing learning and perfecting my craft in school is what will lead me to greater success. I do not want to act because of fame or money–I want to act because it is a beautiful form of self-expression that gives me the greatest feeling in the world. There is nothing better than making other people laugh, or nailing a scene on set, or feeling a connection to another actor on stage. I am proud of how far I have gotten in the time I have gotten to Los Angeles, but I am also so far from where I want to be. I am set apart from others through my dedication. If I need to stay up all night every night to nail something I will do it. I grew up in a family of seven kids and rarely ever had anyone looking out for me or watching me, so I learned to be my own motivator. I want to create art that moves people, art that means something and highlights issues or the beauty of life. I do not want to make something shallow; it is the duty of the artist to explore human truths.
So much of the media coverage is focused on the challenges facing women today, but what about the opportunities? Do you feel there are any opportunities that women are particularly well positioned for?
I feel that women are incredibly empowered right now in the United States and need to use their voice to speak for the women in other parts of the world who are not afforded the same opportunities. Women are beautiful passionate beings, but we are so often taught that our opinions are less important than men. We are taught that we are not the CEO’s or the bosses, but the people on the sidelines who just help shuffle along. I believe women can offer perspectives worth listening to, and that our drive can open a world to change for the better of every single person. It is not about women overthrowing men, it is about equal opportunity and recognition. There is no room for women to be pushed aside, or harassed, or insulted. This is the age of women taking lead, and it is time for the world to follow. Growing up as a Latina woman of color, a lot of assumptions are made of me. Sometimes I am too colored to play white (too “ethnic”), but other times I am not ethnic enough. I want to highlight how important it is to shatter stereotypes and show every person of every background is worthy of the same shot to make it.
- Phone: 2169043616
- Email: email@example.com
- Instagram: @sofiafehn
- Twitter: @sofifehn
Jordan Keith, Irvin Rivera