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Meet Valentina Murra

Today we’d like to introduce you to Valentina Murra.

Valentina, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
Yes! My story is one that has led me to a place of realizing that I’ve been stepping into a season of full freedom and that I don’t have to fit in a box in any aspect of my life. It has shown me that any limits ever placed on me by others or even myself should be removed. Even this year has shown me there’s no time to waste, and that what we have to say in this generation needs to be heard. It’s made me want to tell every single young girl that she can do anything, no matter where she comes from or what she wants to do with her life.

I was born in Bogota, Colombia and moved to the United States when I was five years old with my mom. Most people don’t know that English was actually my second language. I grew up in Fort Lauderdale, Florida and I knew from a very early age that I loved anything having to do with creativity, specifically music and acting. My teachers encouraged my mom to place me in piano lessons and that was the moment everything changed. In junior year, I had a plan of studying either physics or neuroscience at UCLA but my love for acting and music completely expanded. That year, my angel of a mom agreed to move with me to Los Angeles at 17. I don’t know where I’d be without her and without that big move.

I’m so thankful for the projects I’ve been part of since moving here. I’ve been able to work on several films, such as “Faith” opposite Britt Lower which I also exec produced and “Save the Day” directed by Joss Whedon. A year later, I worked on HBO’s pilot, “MANIC” and continued to step more into producing as well! I ended up writing, producing and starring in my own SAG-AFTRA short film, “Silence”, bringing awareness to sexual assault on high school and college campuses. Now, I’m writing a short on drug addiction and auditioning! In terms of music, I’ve been playing and singing since I was very young and in February, released my first single, “Can’t Sleep.” Through this wild year, I’ve been writing a lot more and finishing up my first EP.

There have been moments in my life where I’ve felt extremely insecure or that I had to fit in. Those moments were debilitating and all driven by fear. Pushing past them changed the way that I went about my life. I realized every single person is so special and powerful, and stepping into things without fear is what has brought me that freedom that I’m learning to live in. I truly just want to show girls that are in middle and high school, especially in the Latinx community, that they are loved more than they could ever imagine and that they can do anything they set their minds to. No matter what society has taught us, whether it’s a way you have to look or that you have to choose one career field, you should never limit yourself.

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?
I wouldn’t say it’s been a smooth road at all. When I first got here, I did not know a soul. I also think that finding the best team that has your best interests at heart can be difficult as well. Finding the best agent/manager was difficult at first. Being Colombian and Middle Eastern and being told that there were certain roles that I just would never be able to audition for was disheartening. I am so thankful for how far the industry’s come in such a short amount of time, and I’m believing for way more representation moving forward.

Now, I can say I truly have the best team I prayed for and I feel very grateful for every struggle along the way. I think it all led me to where I am now, from moving to America to any struggle I’ve encountered in this city and any struggle mentally, it’s made me stronger. It has led me to knowing some of the greatest friends I can call family. It has definitely all been worth it, no matter how hard it’s been at times.

We’d love to hear more about your work and what you are currently focused on. What else should we know?
I’m primarily an actor, producer, and musician. What I stand for is making sure every single person feels seen and heard. I want all of my projects that I either create or am part of to stand for something greater than myself. I’ve been able to work on projects dealing with mental illness, sexual assault, and immigration, and it’s placed a fire in me wanting to bring awareness to these issues coming from a hopeful place.

I’ve been mentoring some middle school-aged girls at a school in Inglewood, and that’s made me realize that I just want young girls to feel confident and loved. Through acting and music, I want girls that come from where I do to feel a sense that they can do anything in life. I don’t want them to feel like they need to fit in any boxes for the opportunities are truly endless. I want them to know that through hard work and belief in themselves, their goals and dreams can be achieved.

I just have a love for people. I have a love for society as a whole to heal from its issues and continue to grow into a healthier and stronger place. I believe that through my art, I can be a small part in making that happen. Bringing awareness to real issues and standing for a message that things can change and that hope and love always win is what I want to tell through my art.

Do you look back particularly fondly on any memories from childhood?
My favorite memory from childhood is going to the Florida keys every summer. I remember that’s the reason I fell in love with the water. I’d always go with my best friends and its those trips that you’ll never forget because of how much you laughed. I just look back on little trips to the keys being such a huge part of my childhood and I’m thankful for them because of the people I met and the fun I had while I wasn’t in school! I also got my golf cart license at 12 years old and I remember how funny it was riding around with my family. It’s moments like that, or a random little trip to Aruba one summer that broadened my love for the ocean and how free I feel whenever I’m near it. Those memories remind me of joy and laughter and just make me smile.

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Image Credit:
Johnny Juarez and SmallIcedCoffee

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