Hira Ashar finally found her love and passion in the field of acting after a long journey of self-discovery to finding a profession that truly feeds her soul. She tried her hand at a couple of things before discovering a career in acting. She worked at an NGO for a bit, after which she also tried her hand at retail. Given that she’s a great dancer, she also considered professional dancing for a while. After she realized she didn’t want to take that up professionally, she pursed medicine from UCLA and also worked at a hospital for 2 years after that.
However, soon after, she moved to India to try her hand at acting. Acting has always been a part of her life as a hobby, but it wasn’t until she got her bachelor’s degree was she confident enough to actually give it a shot. Having a backup, actually helped her take the final plunge.
She moved to Bombay to take acting up professionally. Having lived in the US all her life, starting here from scratch, definitely wasn’t easy. We were curious to know what it’s like for a complete outsider to find work and go through with the audition process. She says, “Along the way, I’ve learned that it’s either a hit or a miss. There will be days where you are frustrated and sitting there wondering what you are doing in life. Then a few days later you’ll either audition or shoot for something that will make you forget all of that. For me particularly, I touch base with a few casting directors, go for an audition, and if they feel that I fit the part, I get a call back.”
Hira Ashar has done a lot of videos with Filter copy, she has also done a web series with Grazia called Intern Diaries and recently just finished her web series College Romance by the Timeliners. “It’s so overwhelming that I am getting to live my dream, I’ve always wanted to give this a go and I consider myself fortunate to be able to. Having said that, in this industry, you truly never will have a sense of security because it’s always project to project. Which can be exciting or exhausting it just depends on how you see it. I have my days and moments, but I always remember the larger picture – keep the dream alive,” she says.
Apart from work security another issue that a beginner could struggle with is the pay day when you’re just starting off. But, just like any other industry, experience and good work goes a long way; and the lack of security makes up for the work satisfaction one feels whilst working on a great project.
If there’s one piece of advice she could give to anyone starting off in the same field, it would be, “Always have a Plan B. Not only does it provide for a sense of security but will always allow you to take risks because you know you have something to fall back on if things don’t work out. And, sometimes things don’t work out. Even if they don’t, it’s the universe telling you that you’re made for something bigger and better, so hang in there,” says Hira.
Apart from these inspirational words, she leaves us with a solid quote from The Great Gatsby, “I was within and without, simultaneously enchanted and repelled by the inexhaustible variety of life,” and goes on to tell us that it reminds her of how this industry is exciting, exhausting, it has its ups and downs, and yet it’ll never fail to surprise you in the best way possible. So, let’s keep going, folks!
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