Aidan Alexander talks about new series, doing good and his wonderfully sarcastic fans
With social media becoming one of the biggest and most accessible ways to connect with people, many celebs take to their favorite social platforms to spread important messages to their fans. One such rising star with a huge social media presence is actor Aidan Alexander. Through his fashion, lifestyle and simply entertaining YouTube videos and Instagram pics, Aidan is quickly becoming a voice of his generation.
What makes Aidan so special is his determination to use his growing social media presence to do good in the world. He shows his young fans that they can achieve anything by staying true to themselves and being kind to others. As a social influencer, he feels a responsibility to empower each of his fans while making sure they feel comfortable, happy and proud in their own skin.
In addition to his YouTube videos, Instagram presence and many philanthropic endeavors, Aidan is busy working on the new show, "The Bluffs," in which he'll star as Dylan. The show explores teenage culture through the lives of a close-knit group living in Los Angeles. While Aidan may have many personality traits in common with his character, there's one particular aspect that makes him very different.
Aidan wasn't always living it up in L.A. The young entertainer grew up in Idaho and got his start auditioning for local theater productions and school musicals. It wasn't until his drama teacher took him on a trip to L.A. that he first met a talent manager and fell in love with the place that would become his future home.
Now, Aidan is making headlines for directing and producing "Dinner with YouTubers," collaborating with Seventeen Magazine and AwesomenessTV, working with non-profit organizations including Pencils of Promise, Boxed Water, Do Something and NOH8 and making appearances at BeatyCon events around the globe.
We were lucky enough to sit down and chat with the young rising sensation to talk about his role on "The Bluffs," his oh-so trendy style and his passion for making the world a better, safer and more resourceful place.
What got you interested in acting at such a young age?
I actually started completely non-professionally when I was about 6 years old. I always had a huge interest in musical theater and films, I'm an avid movie watcher, so I always knew I wanted to do that. It was just a matter of breaking in. I'm from Idaho, so breaking in is 10 times harder there. I started doing musicals and small music theater projects. When I was in first grade I did "Peter Pan." I was "Lost Boy #3." I had two lines, one of which was "Peter" and the other was "Don't go." That's what started it all. Where's my Oscar (laughs)? After that I just did an assortment of things. I booked the lead in "Honey I Shrunk the Kids" which was exciting. I then went to a performing arts school starting in sixth grade. My drama teacher was a casting director from L.A. and she brought me to L.A. on a school field trip. I met a manager there and now I'm here. The rest is history!
Talk to me about your role on "The Bluffs!" Do you relate to your character on the show?
I definitely relate to many aspects of Dylan. He's an avid partier which I don't relate to because I'm more into spending time with a close-knit group of friends. I like quality over quantity. But I definitely relate to him in that he often gives his friends advice. I feel like I'm usually the person in my friend group who a lot of people come to talk to. It's funny because Dylan gives a lot of advice but then he doesn't really follow any of it, which I kind of relate to in a sense. I feel like I'm good at dishing out advice but then when it comes to me I'm like, "ah what do I do?" I also relate to him in the sense that he really really cares about his friends and he's for sure one of the most reliable people in the friend group. I hope that my friends would say I'm reliable I definitely think I am.
How did you first get into the fashion scene? Is it something you were always interested in?
I always strived to look good even when I was little. Once I moved out to L.A. there was definitely a culture shock for me in the way people dressed. For the most part, Idaho is really cold. It was a complete opposition to see the way people dress in Los Angeles. As I started seeing more and more people express themselves through clothing I became more and more interested in it. I started reading magazines and blogs. I tried to develop a style for myself. As I worked on more things and began to develop recognition in the digital and theatrical world, I began to realize how important it is to look good. I knew it was something I was interested in from a young age, but as I got older I learned how to facilitate that interest and put an outfit together.
Do you have a term you would use to describe your style?
I would say my style emulates New York in the spring. I love a good jacket with some layering and black pants and boots. I'm always wearing jackets in Los Angeles and my followers are always commenting on it. I have a really nice All Saints jackets that I love. I'm always wearing it.
You're involved with many philanthropic endeavors including Pencils of Promise, Do Something, NoH8 and Boxed Water. Will you talk to me a bit about what got you involved with each of those causes and why they're so important to you?
This is probably such a cliche answer but I love being involved in anything I can help out with whether it's a charity or a personal situation my friends are having. When you have a presence or a group of people looking up to you, I think you kind of have an authority and a responsibility to help with causes like that. I'm actually working with Pencils of Promise right now. The campaign promotes literacy in third world countries and they build schools. They have some amazing celebrities on board and I'm so excited to be a part of it.
Do Something is great because they work with so many different projects whether it's domestic violence, equality or bullying. They're active about so many important issues so I feel like I'm knocking out so many birds with one stone whenever I work with them. I love NoH8 because I completely support the message behind it. I think that everyone's equal. Pencils of Promise is great because we're so lucky to be living in a country where we have affordable education -- at times -- and we have schools we can learn in. It's important to promote literacy for people without those resources. Boxed Water is amazing because I'm super into the environment and they plant trees for every photo you post of the boxed water. Plus it's trendy! The box is so cool and it matches my Instagram aesthetic. But right now I'm most actively working on Pencils of Promise since I've wrapped up my work with many of the others for now.
I know you're in New York for BeautyCon which was on Saturday. How did it go? Did you have any favorite moments?
It was great! It was so exciting and fun to meet many of the people who support me in New York. I don't come to New York too often, at least until this point, so it's very cool to connect with the people on this coast. There were so many people who I really look up to that I got to meet at BeautyCon and there were a bunch of people I already know who I got to see again. It was just great I always love working with BeautyCon, they're amazing. My meet and greet was crazy! It was insane and so cool.
Talk to me about your use of social media. In one video I watched you said you don't consider yourself a "YouTuber" per se, but you clearly have a massive social media presence. How do you mostly utilize social media to connect with fans and spread your unique ideas and creativity?
When I said I wasn't really a YouTuber, I meant it more in the aspect that I don't want to be seen as just a YouTuber. It works for so many people and I'm not dissing on YouTube in the slightest. I'm friends with so many amazing YouTubers who work so hard and I have tremendous respect for them. But for me personally, I do a lot of work outside the social space as well whether it's theatrically or with non-profit organizations. I'm a YouTuber in the way that I post videos to connect with people just like I post Instagram pictures to connect with people. But I'd say that's another branch of what I'd like to do. So I don't think I want to be considered a YouTuber. I want to be considered an actor and an activist. I use social media mainly to try to reach out to people and educate them on things they can change, things they can help with and ways we can move forward as a group of people to improve things. I also really like to post lifestyle stuff. I like to post selfies, Instagram my coffee and connect with people in less serious ways as well. As an influencer, it is your duty to influence, so that's mainly how I use social media.
Do you have one YouTube video you've made that particularly stands out to you or was your favorite?
I really like my "Embarrassing Moments" video. It was one of those videos that I was so hesitant to post because I was like "this is my life on the line here!" It was so embarrassing. But it had a very good reaction from my subscribers because they like seeing that glimpse of me. They like to know that I'm a normal person and I occasionally break my babysitter's leg (laughs). The video was just so fun to film, post and promote. It's a longer video and I just keep going and going about all of these terribly hilarious things that have happened to me.
What's one thing you want people to take away from your YouTube channel?
I definitely want people to take away that it's okay to be you, it's okay to be the funny friend and it's okay not to be perfect. I was never the one in my friend group who stood out. I wasn't the one the girls came to. I was the good listener who people came to talk to. So I just want people to know that it's okay not to be the center of attention all the time. I also want people to take out of my channel what they want to get out of it. I try to incorporate many positive messages in it. Whatever you can get out of it is definitely my main goal.
Talk to me about your fans! What do you love most about them?
I could go on forever. My supporters and subscribers are - I've said this word a million times but don't know how else to put it - UNREAL! Most of them are so similar to me and are so sarcastic. I can tweet a selfie and they'll all make fun of me. But that's exactly what my best friend would do so it's great. They're so sassy - and I don't know if that's my fault - but I love every minute of it. I feel like I've really drawn in a great group of people who have truly supported me over the years. It's a wide demographic of people but for the most part they're so foul-mouthed and sassy and ready to just jump and come back at me that it's never boring. It's so great and I wouldn't want it any other way. I feel like I'm having a conversation with my friends every time I talk to them.
Aside from "The Bluffs," are you working on any projects right now that fans should get excited about?
I do have a lot of stuff that I'm actively working on. I'm heading to the studio right after this interview, so they can get excited about that! Although I'm not going to get too in depth about it. I'm producing and starring in a lot of great content that will be coming out soon and I'm so excited. I hope they like what I'm working on and I'm excited for them to see it all eventually!
Click through this slideshow to see some of Aidan's hottest fashion moments:
Watch this video to learn more about Pencils of Promise, the non-profit Aidan is currently working actively with:
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