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Thursday, February 2, 2017

MODEL CITIZEN: Model/Actress/Author Johanna Thea

by Cyrus Webb

Over the past 10 years Conversations Magazine has profiled some of the biggest names in the arts and entertainment industries, sharing their stories and introducing them to new audiences.  In 2017 I decided to make sure that we were ourselves finding new talent to share with our readers, so I put out a casting call asking for individuals to share their stories with us so we could in turn share them with you.

The first in our 2017 special series called "Model Citizens" is Johanna Thea*. She is a millennial living between London and Los Angeles, CA.

Johanna, glad we could share part of your story through our "Model Citizens" feature. First of all tell us what is it that keeps you inspired towards pursuing your goals and dreams?

Love. Love of self and my family and friends. Love from them, and in times when I am utterly alone, or at least feel it, I look to those who have lived and persevered in their high spirits no matter what. So, for example Victor Frankl, Anne Frank, my Uncle as regards business and my Grandma relative to integrity of being and spirit, she totally holds herself with such elegance, grace and style, which at 82 is no small feat. Celebrity-wise I adore Rachel Weisz having met and worked with her recently, and Diana Ross whom my mother introduced me to at her concert for my 13th birthday.

When did you first realize that model or acting was something you were interested in?
Initially I was scouted for high fashion modeling which I did in Limerick City for Celia Holmann Lee’s Agency (Assets affiliated), then afterwards I realized onstage in New York's Bowery Poetry Club Monologue Slam, how much passion I had for acting. My initial dilemma was whether to write my book first or pursue acting. In 2008 I went with acting, but my book was released on Amazon in January 2015, and I’ve been a full-time professional actress and part time high fashion and commercial model since June 2015. I’m loving it! Every step of the way is absolutely wonderful, and I’ve honestly never been so happy, and grateful, to not only get to be living my dream, but for so much international interest and support. It’s been absolutely wonderful.

How has social media helped you in sharing your gifts and talents with the world?
Facebook allows you to connect with a great many people in very authentic ways, which is truly beneficial to any artist who’s busy. We may well want to connect and share what we’ve done/written/created and without these mediums we really have to rely on the Press to do that work for us! Also Twitter which I’m just getting the hang of truly is fabulous as it allows you to express your desires, interests and personality so easily! Instagram I’m using to post images alongside my poetry, which is eventually going to become my actual first poetry book later this year.

You've already accomplished so much, Johanna. What are some of the goals you have for yourself in 2017?
I’m going to publish my second book “The Light Within” in mid 2017. I would love to secure an Irish agency’s representation, building my network internationally and ideally work in Los Angeles on a high quality, successful tv series as one of the main characters. Also securing an agent in LA, I already have management, and being on a tv show in the UK also would be wonderful. My amazing agent Freya at Simon and How is currently looking into securing that for me. Naturally having already worked with Steven Spielberg in the capacity of a body double, I would be so ecstatic to be booked by him for one of his features. He is a master, and I truly want to work with the best the industry has to offer; the Wachowskis, Tarantino, Tina Fey, Rachel Weisz. The list goes on. This brings me to my final goal for this year: working as hard yet effortlessly as possible on my craft. I’m dedicating lots of space and time this year to refining my skills and honing in on the best possible forms of emotional expression I can.

Thank you so much for your time, Johanna. Wishing you nothing but continued success. Finally, what advice would you have for anyone—regardless of their profession—when it comes to pursuing their own goals?
Be relentless, fearless and unapologetic. It’s one life we have now, so taking full responsibility for that means powering on in your own way, regardless of others’ opinions, beliefs and support or lack thereof. You are always only responsible for achieving your own goals and not actually answerable to anyone, except you! Also, enjoy the journey, in the end this is the real prize, the beautiful journey.

Stay connected with Johanna at the links below:

*     Photo Credit: Simon Annand

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