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Rising Star Julia Stier: I love that people are focusing more and more on the importance of mental health; Even just taking five minutes to meditate in the morning can really help center you and boost your mood

I love that people are focusing more and more on the importance of mental health. Even just taking five minutes to meditate in the morning can really help center you and boost your mood. Personally, I love journaling for 15 minutes right when I wake up. It gives me an opportunity to clear my head, […]

I love that people are focusing more and more on the importance of mental health. Even just taking five minutes to meditate in the morning can really help center you and boost your mood. Personally, I love journaling for 15 minutes right when I wake up. It gives me an opportunity to clear my head, and starts my morning off right!


As a part of our series about pop culture’s rising stars, I had the distinct pleasure of interviewing Julia Stier.

Julia Stier is an LA-based actress, playwright, and comedian. She has enjoyed success both onstage and onscreen, and is a member of the acting company of Hero Theatre.

Julia has been seen on stages in Los Angeles, New York City, San Antonio, and London. She is an Equity Membership Candidate, and most recently appeared in Theatricum Botanicum’s production of “The Skin of Our Teeth,” which was nominated for the Los Angeles Drama Critic’s Circle’s McCulloh Award for Best Revival.

As a part of her onscreen work, Julia hosted [email protected], which aired in the greater Los Angeles area. On [email protected] — a live, 30-minute talk show — Julia had the opportunity to interview many industry professionals, including actors Yara Shahidi (Black-ish, Grown-ish) and Jacqueline Tobloni (The L Word, Grimm), and Academy Award winner Dean Pitchford (writer of Footloose).

As a comedian, Julia has performed at The Comedy Store and The Complex Theatre, and is co-creator of the sketch comedy duo, Adult Children.

In 2018, her original one-act play Last Night in Town had its Off-off Broadway premiere at the Manhattan Repertory Theatre in NYC. She has also worked extensively with It’s Personal, creating solo performance pieces.​

Julia is the creator of Players, Performers, & Portrayers, a resource guide for young actors, and holds a BA in Theatre and a minor in Cinematic Arts from the University of Southern California.


Thank you so much for doing this with us! Can you tell us the story of how you grew up?

Iam originally from a small suburb of Chicago called Schaumburg. My mom is a children’s book author, so I had a pretty artsy childhood. For a while, I actually used to want to be a painter because my mom, for fun, would have us study different artists and their works. She used to make flashcards with a painting on one side and the name of the artist on the other, and she would quiz us! I can now idenify a piece by Renoir or a van Gogh in a second! We also used to have a set of watercolors that we took on every vacation. Once a trip, we would unpack our paints and paint a site or scene. I was never very good at it, but it was always something I looked forward to!

My older brother and I are lucky that my parents love stories and music so much, and that they passed a lot of that down to us! My dad — an engineer — used to be a drummer, so he exposed us to a lot of different types of music, and my mom, being a writer, obviously made sure we were constantly reading and learning. This early expose really shaped my fascination with the arts.

Can you share a story with us about what brought you to this specific career path?

My parents took me to see my first professional show in Chicago when I was only six-years-old. It was Les Miserables –I know, I was probably a bit young for it. However, my mom used to play on old cassette she had of the Les Miserables soundtrack, and my brother and I took to it like fish to water. When I was in first grade, I even performed in the school talent show singing “Castle on a Cloud”! So I definitenly had an early interest in the performing arts. However, it wasn’t until I moved to Texas at the age of twelve that I realized being an actor was something I could actually pursue professionally.

Middle school is a rough time for most of us. Now, imagine moving across the country right in the middle of it. Yeah, it was hard. So, when the theatre community at my new school in San Antonio embraced me, I fully jumped in. In high school, I dedicated my time and life to theatre. I think I partook in about 20 productions in my four years there.

I went on the pursue my BA in theatre at the University of Southern California, and since graduating in 2018, have enjoyed the wild ride that is being an actor in Los Angeles.

Can you tell us the most interesting story that happened to you since you began your career?

A little over two years ago, I had the chance to work with Dean Productions Theatre Company, and teach at their Theatre Bootcamp for Kids with Cancer. In this class, we worked with pediatric cancer patients and survivors and their siblings to write, design, and perform an original short play. It was so touching to see these kids who had been through so much be in an enviroment where they could just play. They weren’t cancer patients — they were just kids.

What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now?

With all of the theatres closed and no one filming, I’ve been staying in the game by creating as much content as possible. I recently finished a class on pitching a sit-com pilot, taught by Stan Zimmerman; the theatre company It’s Personal did a Zoom reading of my new 10-minute play Better as Us; my brother and I have been creating and filming sketches about quarantining with our parents, and have been releasing them under the name Adult Children; and, to top it off, I am close to completing my first feature-length screenplay!

We are very interested in diversity in the entertainment industry. Can you share why you think it’s important to have diversity represented in film and television? How can that potentially affect our culture?

There are SO many reasons why it’s important to have diversity represented in film and television — and theatre!

I have had the priviledge of working with Hero Theatre, which is a social justice theatre company. Through Hero — which predominantly produces plays by playwrights of color — I have learned so much by witnessing works written by people who experience the world differently than I do.

Everyone deserves to see themselves in the arts. Everyone deserves to hear their story on stage.

What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first started” and why. Please share a story or example for each.

Stay in class

Not only will you learn from your teachers (obviously), but you will learn so much from your classmates. I have found my fellow actors to be some of the most generous people when it comes to sharing information. Being in class is a great way to hear about opportunities that you may have missed.

“The audition is the work, the work is the perk.”

A professor of mine in college used to say this all the time. And he’s right. You will audition for WAY more things than you’ll actually get. Auditioning is the hard part. You need to master the art of auditioning.

Find a work/life balance

You are not defined by your job title! You don’t have to work yourself into the ground to be a “serious actor.” Take a vacation. Have a girl’s night out. Work hard, but also enjoy your life. Find that balance.

Don’t be afraid of the word “No”

I used to get embarrassed really easily, and was afraid to reach out to someone, or ask for what I wanted because I was afraid of hearing the word “no.” But now, I’ve learned that a) people are usually pretty open to helping; and b) even if they say no, it’s not the end of the world. And people are typically pretty polite, so it’s usually just a “no thank you” (or no response), and we all move on with our lives.

Figure out the type of stories you want to tell

Find what resonates with you. What message do you want to put out in the world? What kind of stories do you not want to tell? Are there certain topics that make you uncomfortable? This is important to figure out early on.

Which tips would you recommend to your colleagues in your industry to help them to thrive and not “burn out”?

Take some time for yourself! I get it, it’s easy to become a workaholic. As creatives, we tend to have a million ideas running through our minds, and we want to turn each one into a reality.

With acting, you never feel like you’re “off the clock.” At least for me, I always feel pressured to be working on something. I’m slowly learning that it’s ok to take time for myself to meditate, or read a good book, or do something that has NOTHING to do with my career.

Taking time out for myself makes me feel refreshed, reenergized, and ready to take on the entertainment industry!

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. 🙂

I love that people are focusing more and more on the importance of mental health. Even just taking five minutes to meditate in the morning can really help center you and boost your mood. Personally, I love journaling for 15 minutes right when I wake up. It gives me an opportunity to clear my head, and starts my morning off right!

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?

I have been very blessed to work with some incredible mentors and teachers. Each step of the way — from middle school, to high school, to college, and beyond — I have met people who have believed in me, inspired me, and guided me. I am forever grateful to anyone who has taken time to teach me or share their story and advice with me. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?

In an interview with Backstage, Amber Gray (who plays Persephone in the musical Hadestown) said something about the entertaintment industry that has really stuck with me: “One, there is enough work to go around. Two, if you stay in line, you will get served.”

This quote reminds me that if you’re in this game for the long-run, you will have a career. Succeeding as an actress requires just as much hard work and perserverance as it does talent — maybe even more so. She’s basically saying, stick with it, your time will come.

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?

Hands down, Mindy Kaling.

When I was in college, I read her book Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me (and Other Concerns) and was so inspired by how she used writing as a way to pave a path for herself, that I actually co-created (with two other women) a theatre company at USC. I did this so I could learn about producing, with the intention of one day prodcuing my own, original work, and giving myself a platform to showcase my writing and acting. My experience producing with that company led me to becoming a producing fellow at Hero Theatre. I was also given the opportunity to participate in Hero’s mentorship program, which has opened so many doors for me. It’s been amazing to trace how one opportunity has led to another, and how it all leads back to Kaling’s book.

I also hope to have the kind of career she has. I am working towards being an actress who writes (and stars in!) her own work.

How can our readers follow you online?

There are a lot of ways to stay connected with me! I regularly post updates about my bookings and events on my website, www.juliastier.com. You can also follow me on various social media platforms:

Instagram: @juliastier

@playersperformersportrayers

Twitter: @juliastier1

And for those interested at getting an inside look at the entertainment industry, check out my publication Players, Performers, & Portrayers.

This was very meaningful, thank you so much! We wish you continued success!

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