We had the good fortune of connecting with Jillian Ferry and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jillian, how has your pespective on work-life balance evolved over time?
I work a decent amount from home. Having a designated work space and hours to clock in and out of are essential and how I maintain work/life balance. Doing this and keeping to a schedule helps me to not “take my work home with me” when I need to relax or focus on other things. With the quarantine there are days when this wonderful plan goes completely out the window. As an actor, creating content is something I’d be doing even if I wasn’t couped up in my house. Some days I find myself “working” late at night but for me it’s just what I love to do.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
First and foremost, I’d consider myself a comedic actress although my training began in the classical arts. I started training in opera my junior year of high school and received a vocal scholarship to the University of Redlands in Southern California. At Redlands I sang in the University Choir and received a BA in Theater Arts. After graduating, I realized that acting on stage was what I wanted to do professionally but I felt that I needed a lot more training. Out of thousands of applicants, 20 actors including myself were accepted into the Stella Adler Studio of Acting class of 2015. I trained in New York City for three years in Adler’s Day Conservatory program. I was taught by theater icons such as Andrew Wade, the head voice and speech coach for the Royal Shakespeare Company in London as well as Jimmy Tripp, student and protege of Stella Adler, herself. I loved living in New York. I was exposed to such authentic and talented artists of all disciplines and living in the city definitely gave me the backbone I needed in order to survive the cut-throat industry of LA. After taking such a deep dive into dramatic and classical acting, I found myself at the Westside Comedy Theater. At the Westside I was introduced into different kinds of art: improv, stand-up and sketch writing; I fell in love. I believe having a strong foundation in the classical arts, learning how to prepare as an actor combined with practicing improv and learning how to think on my feet is what has shaped me into who I am today.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
There’s so many amazing places to visit in Los Angeles but I’m biased to the west side. There are so many beautiful beaches to visit and I highly recommend taking a day trip to Catalina Island. I would definitely take my friends to the Westside Comedy Theater to watch a stand up show or just some great improv. The Comedy Store and Laugh Factory are also great venues to go see professional comedians do their thing.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
When I first moved to LA I read “Self Management for Actors” written by the incomparable Bonnie Gillespie. Bonnie’s book, workshops, and online community really taught me the business of acting and understanding the importance of knowing what my brand is and how to map out my desired acting career. This leads me to my next shoutout which is to Aaron Krebs. Aaron is the co-owner/founder of the Westside Comedy Theater in Santa Monica. He introduced me to this wonderful community and it was here that I really fine tuned my comedic acting chops through improv and sketch. The WCT community continues to give me opportunities to grow as a person and an actor and I owe them a lot!