Ensure you are doing things that align with your soul and not things that give you clout. The more something aligns with your values, the less likely that you will feel burn out.
I had the pleasure of interviewing Jacques Chevelle.
Jacques Chevelle is an incredibly skilled entertainer who is renowned for depicting the part of ‘Jaget’ in the television arrangement ‘Side Hustle’ which was put on TV in the year 2020.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! Can you tell us the story of how you grew up?
I was born at Northside Hospital, which is an important marker for all the people in Atlanta! I’m the youngest of three siblings. My oldest brother would claim that I am the most spoiled. I would argue my parents just had more practice, or I wore them out. My mom always told me that I broke the mold. At a young age, I gravitated towards the arts. I would see my brother draw anime characters like Inuyasha and Guko, and I thought it was cool. I would spend my adolescence’s copying the art around me. It wasn’t until I was much older that I understood that the world around me affected my subconscious, and I could express that inner world through my art.
Can you share a story with us about what brought you to this specific career path?
I saw Queen Latifah perform in “Set It Off” and “Last Holiday.” I was transfixed! The way she expressed her emotions, compassion, and her ability to empathize with polar opposite characters. I was hooked.
Can you tell us the most interesting story that happened to you since you began your career?
I was connected to a project that ended up falling through. At that time, one of my closest friends was in the project as well, but I hadn’t met him yet. Fast forward years later, we found out how many times our paths almost crossed while vacationing in Mexico for winter break.
Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?
I had auditioned for a Marvel movie, and the sides were mostly actions the character was doing (like reading a magazine or listening to music). I went in with the choice to pantomime the entire beginning and then start my scene. The casting director stopped me abruptly and yelled, “you can’t take that long!” I felt like a deer in headlights. I learned that people want to see the fun parts.
What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now?
I just finished a project with the same friend I went to Mexico called “Neighborhood Crooks.” I did a lot of behind the scenes. I’m not sure when it’s coming out, but look out for it. It’s great!
We are very interested in diversity in the entertainment industry. Can you share three reasons with our readers about why you think it’s important to have diversity represented in film and television? How can that potentially affect our culture?
It is essential to have diverse stories that are compassionate, empathetic, and that is truthful. It teaches young Brown and Black boys and girls that the skies the limit. Storytelling has always been a way to create change in communities. When we put out stories that show humanity, then it helps our world become more understanding and loving.
What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first started” and why. Please share a story or example for each.
Here are the 5 things I wish someone told me when I first started.
- Having a community is always better than networking. Networking is transactional while building a community is forever. All of the projects that I have done have come from relationships from the community that I’ve built.
- The only thing that matters is that you enjoyed the audition. Audition’s that I stressed over I never got. One day I had three auditions on the same day. I couldn’t worry about every single one, so I went in with the mindset of letting everything happen, and I ended up booking one and getting a callback for another!
- Always put more than you think you need in the parking meter. Most casting offices are running 10 to 15 minutes behind. Make sure you avoid that $70 ticket!
- Practice, Practice, Practice! There are times that I’m not feeling it for whatever reason. Especially with comedy, you can figure out the tone and where the jokes are and rely on prior knowledge.
- Take a break! I know it contradicts the last tip, but just like everything, you need rest in between. I would be going for months, taking classes acting classes in North Hollywood, putting up a play in Santa Monica, auditioning for my next job all across Los Angeles, and working a night shift in Culver City. It was fun juggling all those things, but it was also a lot! When you workout, you have to rest in between; acting is the same way. After a month off, I usually come back with a new perspective, and everything I worked on has time to breathe. I become more specific on the roles I like to play and the minds I want to work with!
Which tips would you recommend to your colleagues in your industry to help them thrive and not “burn out”?
I recommend to check-in with yourself. Ensure you are doing things that align with your soul and not things that give you clout. The more something aligns with your values, the less likely that you will feel burn out.
You are a person of enormous influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂
Find joy and excitement wherever you are in life. Many terrible things are happening in the world today, but it’s important to remember that it’s some remarkable things happening.
10. None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful to who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?
My sister and brother. I looked up to them. I had insecurities, and they had looked down towards me and said, “It’s okay.” Words that are so simple but earth-shaking for the receiver. That gift gave me the confidence to be the man I am today.
Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?
“Be who you are and say what you feel because those who matter will not mind.”
Is there a person in the world or in the US whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this, especially if we tag them. 🙂
Viola Davis, I want to pick her brain. I look up to her as an artist. She makes me want to dig deeper and explore more!
How can our readers follow you online?
You can find on Instagram @jacqueschevelle