PHOTOGRAPHY BY MICHAEL SCOTT SLOSAR
INTERVIEW BY KATINA GOULAKOS
STYLED BY KIRSTEN READER
Charisma and talent are two qualities our next subject is definitely not lacking. Born in Idaho, Aidan spent a lot of time in Manhattan with his mother. The 18-year-old is wise beyond his years and opened up about his career, his inspirations and the pros and cons of social media. The actor has been spending a lot more time on his music recently, his new single Melancholia is out now.
Imagista: Where did you grow up?
Aidan Alexander: My mom lived in New York so I spent a lot of time in New York City but I grew up in Idaho. I feel like spending so much time in Manhattan allowed me to have a well rounded childhood. I got to see the smaller scale life of Idaho but I also got to see the real world at a young age.
Imagista: That’s awesome. Where are you living now?
Aidan Alexander: LA, In the heart of Hollywood.
Imagista: How do you like living in LA?
Aidan Alexander: I love Los Angeles, it is very creative and everyone has good energy. Living in Hollywood is a little crazy but I do love it. Weather is a big thing for me so being able to live in sunshine is really amazing.
Imagista: How did get into acting? Was it inspired by your trips growing up?
Aidan Alexander:: It’s a funny story, there is like one performing arts school in my region. Growing up there was only one art school and I was too young to attend. I wanted to go so bad so I studied really hard and took a test to see if I was eligible to skip a grade and I ended up skipping two grades to attend that school.
Imagista: Oh wow, that’s pretty impressive.
Aidan Alexander: My drama teacher at that school was a casting director in Los Angeles for forty years. She retired and remarried and moved to Meadow Oaks because it is beautiful and she started teaching drama. She really taught me a ton ad recommended I go to California. I went and booked my first audition and the rest as they say, is history.
Imagista: Can you tell me a little bit about your experience filming F*&% The Prom?
Aidan Alexander: It was a great project. F*&% The Prom was an absolute blast to film. Madelaine Petsch is a good friend and I think she is just great. That’s where we met, before Riverdale. She is really talented ad great to work with.
The fact that younger people are watching what I am doing and looking up to me is one of the most rewarding things I could ever imagine. It’s cool to be that person to someone.
Imagista: You are so young and have reached so many people already, especially with the help of social media. In your opinion, do you think social media plays a negative or positive role in society?
Aidan Alexander: I would say the most damming effects are on young peoples mental health. I know a lot of people say it, but that’s because it is true. People only post the best things; they only post the photos they look the best in or when they are doing something cool or fun. It could be tough when you get wrapped up in that and to think that you don’t have anything going on or that you aren’t as good looking or don’t have as much money. I think its human nature to be envious and compare yourself to other people. I think social media holds up a magnifying glass to everything and you can scrutinize yourself more intensely and I think that’s a con.
However, I do think it has such a power in connecting people. I think that so many advances have been made just because we have the ability to contact each other at the drop of a hat, regardless of where we are in the world.
Growing up in Idaho, it would get a little boring and I always wanted to talk to people and I added a bunch of kids my age from around the globe. There’s a boy named Gloson in Malaysia, I became his Facebook friend and we would speak via google translate and I just think it is so cool that we are able to do that and speak to people you would otherwise never get the chance to speak with.
Imagista: Do you find that social media has helped you create a different connection to your fans?
Aidan Alexander: I do my best to respond to everyone but it gets crazy sometimes. I try to be there for my followers. I have felt a lot of the things I know these young people are feeling so I try to be available to them whenever I can.
I think its easy to get normalized to all these numbers- you’ll get 75 000 likes on a photo and all you see is the number, you don’t see it as people engaging. I think its important to take a moment and realize that these are people who care and it is such a privilege.
Imagista: Dwight in Shining Armor is coming out in 2019, what can we expect to see from you in that role?
Aidan Alexander: I originally auditioned for the lead and I tested for it and I was too tall or something super trivial but then, a few months ago, I got a call and they offered me another part on it.
I have always loved fantasy shows it is something that I would have watched when I was younger and that is why I was so excited about it. That was a really amazing experience. We shot in Utah and I think Utah is super beautiful- the entire experience was great and I can’t wait for everyone to see it.
Imagista: What can fans expect to see from you in the future?
Aidan Alexander: I am focusing all my time in music right now so my fans should be ready for that. I could not write more, I am constantly writing. I love writing and I am working really hard in the studio to make music that I want to listen to.
Imagista: How would you describe your style of music, could you compare it to anyone?
Aidan Alexander: I would say dreamy, alt-pop. I love Lorde, Fleetwood Mac, Banks- my list of musical inspirations goes on and on.
Imagista: Are you planning on releasing an album anytime soon?
Aidan Alexander: Definitely an EP. I also just released a new single called Melancholia so everyone reading this should check it out!
Imagista: As a young man, how do you stay grounded in this industry, there is so much pressure on both men and women today, how do you stay yourself?
Aidan Alexander:: Okay, so this sounds really morbid and I don’t mean it that way, but what helps me is knowing that everyone dies and that nothing truly matters. In life, you should only do things that make you happy and things that don’t make you happy you just shouldn’t engage.
The pressure can be a lot and it could be hard to stay grounded but you have to remember that you are doing this because you love doing it. What is the worst that can happen, someone doesn’t like your music or the photo you posted. Its easy to think about it objectively and know that none of these things you are worrying about are going to happen.
Imagista: You have a lot of wisdom for such a young man, who has been your biggest role model?
Aidan Alexander:My mom is amazing. She is the smartest person I have ever met- she is brilliant. She is a hard worker, she is very giving and kind. She has bee a big role model and inspiration in my life.
People who see things differently also inspire me. I love Sylvia Plath and how her poetry is so honest. Those are things I try to emulate, I read a lot of poetry because I find it helps me with my writing.
I also find myself being inspired by new people everyday. Lately it has been Jameela Jamil from The Good Page. She is so cool and intelligent and she is so brave. She has been tackling all the issues that people don’t want to talk about and that’s the beauty of the world, every day you can find yourself being inspired by something or someone else.
Imagista: What fun fact could you tell me about yourself that fans don’t know.
Aidan Alexander: My favorite ice cream is chocolate chip cookie dough, my go to karaoke song is Total Eclipse of the Heart and a very little known story is that when I was 12 I drove my moms car into a fire hydrant.