We had the good fortune of connecting with Ryan Satterfeal and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Ryan, what role has risk played in your life or career?
A life as an actor means constant risk taking – not only in the scene, but throughout your career. It means not taking the “traditional” route through life. There’s no 9-to-5, no weekends off, and no guarantees. There’s no instruction manual for the creative life; there’s many books that can help you, but when it comes down to it, a lot of decisions involve trusting yourself. Taking a risk makes it exciting.

Risk taking made my life and career more adventurous. I didn’t know if moving to a large city would improve my chances, or make me crash and burn, but I jumped into the deep end and swam – and I loved every minute of it. It led to opportunities and relationships that I knew wouldn’t have happened if I didn’t take the risk. Sure, there were bumps along the way, but I grew because of it. Knowing there was no guarantee in what I was doing was frightening, but it made me play fiercely, because I knew it was my shot.

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.
I’ve been told I have a different energy – a “cooking underneath” energy. People have said that I have wheels-turning-constantly, and perhaps that’s true, that I make very subtle choices that say a number.

Originally, I was headed for a tech field (computer science), but as I was signing up for classes at the university, I thought “what the hell am I doing?” I remembered the one acting class I had at my community college and how much fun I had; I changed majors that very same night. I knew that, from that moment on, it wasn’t going to be an easy road. Going from a potential STEM path to the creative field is a jump – with many people rolling their eyes and cracking jokes. The challenge was not giving into their bad talk: “Oh, you’re an actor? What’s your real job?,” “You sure you want to do that?,” etc. etc. It was also learning-as-you-go, since (at the time) there was no syllabus, no guide that showed step-by-step how I’m supposed to do this. I had to learn to trust myself, keep a group of talented individuals around me, and build relationships on my own.

Now, I’ve learned that a lot of it is on me, so I’m constantly shifting and finding what works and what doesn’t work – both on the creative side and business side.

To see my work or keep in touch, check out the following links:




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?
Providing an itinerary is hard, because there’s so much! Chicago has some REALLY cool rooftop bars and restaurants, many in downtown and the North Side. There’s also some hidden ones that you have to do some digging for, but they’re real fun. I’d say we would have to visit the art galleries and museums, where you could spend a lot of time, since they’re so large. A walk along the lake on a nice day is a must – the air hits you just right! If you’re hungry, there’s endless options for food from many different cultures all over the city. If you have a particular taste, we’ll find it. If you like improv and stand up, Chicago is rather known for it, and we have iconic places that I’m sure you’ve heard of! This city is filled with artists, so there’s always a show somewhere, and a nice club, bar, or restaurant close by. An evening out is at-the-ready. I would recommend anyone driving to get parking settled ahead of time, as it’s easier to get around on public transit.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My family: you never let me give up, and you always pushed me forward. My agents: your constant hard work opened doors and put eyes on me. My coaches: you always pushed me to have dangerous confidence and make gripping choices in the room and on camera. My friends: you never doubted me, nor made light of my path, when others did.

Linktr: https://linktr.ee/ryansatterfeal

Image Credits
Tracy Conoboy Photography, Brian McConkey Photography.

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