We had the good fortune of connecting with Carley Herlihy and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Carley, any advice for those thinking about whether to keep going or to give up?
Every ‘No’ is a ‘No’ closer to a ‘Yes’. As an actor and singer/songwriter the industry gives you so many reasons to give up. It’s easy to get consumed in not only the ‘No’s but the nothings. So many auditions end with no response, no notes, no feedback, and no reasoning to why you didn’t get cast. It’s very important to step back and gain perspective at these moments. Realise how many opportunities are really out there. And when you get them, it’s always a learning experience even if it doesn’t work out in your favor. When you get the impulse to give up you need to go back to your “Why”. Why are you doing this? Why did you start? Why is this important to you? Your “Why” will always over power any “No”. You need a mission statement for you in your craft. Mine is; “I am an actor and singer/songwriter because I want to share stories that other people can connect with to either escape from their worldly worries or know they are not alone in them. Art has saved my life many times and I want to continue that craft for others hoping to do the same for them.” No “No” or harsh criticism can ever convince me that that isn’t important.
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.
Being authentically myself in my art automatically sets me apart from others. No one can do you the way you can do you. In songwriting it comes more naturally to be my authentic self because I am telling my stories. But even in acting when I’m auditioning for a role that is opposite from me as a person; I portray the role in a way I find authentic for the character. I am not trying to give the casting director what I think they might want – that is an impossible task that is too easy to fall into. I am most proud of my personal growth with in my career journey. My craft is not perfect, I have a lot to learn. I will always be a student no matter what skill level I reach. That state of mind is something I am very proud of. Small opportunities can lead to large ones. That is one of the biggest thing I’ve learned. I’ve met amazing creatives to collaborate with in waiting rooms and small unpaid projects. I connected with my current theatrical agent through a theater project workshop. Not only did I meet wonderful professionals I will continue to work with in the future but the project itself is continuing to grow every year since the workshop. Growing in your career and craft is not going to be easy all of the time. Not only because it is hard work but imposter syndrome and doubt weighs over me very often. But like I said before, I go back and connect to why I started this profession and I can continue through the struggles. I strive to tell stories and connect with people so they have something to escape their worldly issues or know they are not alone in them.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Anytime someone visits me I take them to HOME Restaurant. They have beautiful outdoor seating, amazing food, and the most refreshing cocktails. I’d take them to my friends comedy open mic in MaCarthur Park which is every Tuesday at 3pm. I would not let them go home before taking them to a spicy chicken place, either Angry Chickz on Hollywood Blvd or Stark’s Hot Chicken in K Town. I love hiking and hanging out in Griffith Park. Bar hopping on hollywood blvd. and going to all the speakeasies is really fun!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I dedicate my shout out to my partner in crime Jenae Galang. She is my best friend, fellow actor, writing partner, and one of my largest supporters. She knows how to bring light into every situation and inspires me everyday.