Actor and singer-songwriter Breana Raquel has been performing from a young age and has been building up her career in major screen projects and her own music. Last month, Breana released her first EP Beginner’s Love, which is streaming on Spotify and Apple Music, and available on iTunes, and she has plans to record more music and perform live on stage. As an actor, Breana has most recently been seen on TV as Hannah in episodes of SEAL Team, and she has previously appeared in Criminal Minds as Bethany Wilson, the mini horror series Mohawk as Estelle, and she has worked on a commercial for Old Navy and Franz Ferdinand’s Feel The Love Go music video. Breana has finished filming the upcoming short film Hidden Faces, which is set to be shown at film festivals. Talking to Breana, she tells us about her new EP Beginner’s Love, playing Hannah in SEAL Team and filming for Criminal Minds as Bethany Wilson.
Is there anything you can say about the upcoming short production, Hidden Faces?
Hidden Faces is a really important film! This film is very close to me because I am biracial and understand completely what my character goes through, I’ve been in that situation more than once. Hidden Faces shows the truth about how racism in the workplace is still present and how difficult it can be for biracial people to feel like they can claim both identities or races all the time. At the end of the day we have the best of both worlds but that often puts us into a very confusing and tricky situation.
Where will people be able to watch it?
Hidden Faces will be shown at multiple film festivals!
What was the experience like filming for the Old Navy ‘Jingle Jammies’ commercial?
Filming the Old Navy commercial was SO much fun! I got to act and sing together for a project, which I thought was awesome since I love both! The pyjamas were super cute and comfy and I had an amazing time meeting other talented people!
How long did it take to film your role of Bethany Wilson in Criminal Minds?
I was filming Criminal Minds for about a week! Long enough to get to know people on set and become friends!
Had you seen the show before booking the job?
Of course! I’ve been watching Criminal Minds for years!
Criminal Minds is a well-known show worldwide; how did you feel knowing you’d be a part of Series 14?
I love crime shows and Criminal Minds is actually one of my favourites to watch. It was really a dream come true getting to be a part of the show! I was internally fangirling the whole time on set.
How did you find the experience at the auditions for Bethany?
I originally auditioned for another role when I first went in. At first I was surprised when they brought me back for a different role, but after reading the sides for Bethany I felt like I resonated more with her. As I moved further and further I knew I would need to be super emotional. Before my director session, I watched The Lovely Bones and Stanley Tucci’s performance was perfect to get myself into the right head space, not to mention totally terrify me before going in.
What was the fan response like to your role in the series?
Everyone thought it was so cool that I would be a part of Criminal Minds! The episode has quite the Halloween theme and plot twist, so it got a lot of good feedback!
You’ve appeared in episodes of SEAL Team; what was your involvement in the story?
Hannah is Emma’s (the main character’s daughter) best friend. Our families have known each other for a long time and my dad took over for Emma’s dad (Jason) when he needed to stay for his family.
Did you get chance to watch it when it was shown on TV?
I did! It was really cool and strange at the same time to see myself on TV.
Can you tell us about the series Mohawk and your character Estelle?
Mohawk is a mini horror series, and I played Estelle. Estelle is a ghost who haunts the town, but she finds herself connecting with a boy when a new family moves in. He’s an outsider, so she kind of takes it upon herself to protect him. Estelle was super fun to play, I had never played a role like that before!
What work do you have coming up in the next few months?
Alongside with my acting, I’m working on music! I love going back and forth between the two. Definitely keeps me busy!
What can you say about your recently released EP?
My EP called Beginner’s Love was released February 14th! It’s pop/R&B and it’s five songs! You can stream it on Spotify, Apple Music, or buy it on iTunes!
How excited were you to release Beginner’s Love?
I was super excited and a little anxious to release Beginner’s Love. It was my first real project that I had put a lot of work into!
Have you always had an interest in both music and acting?
Yes I have! I started singing at five and acting came along too at a young age. I’ve always felt like myself when I’m singing or acting. I love that I have both sides to keep me entertained!
We heard you had appeared in a Franz Ferdinand music video, which song was it for and what was your time on set like?
It was for Feel The Love Go. It was an interesting time on set, I had never been a part of a music video before. I figured I would try it out! There were some fun costumes and I met some cool people!
We understand you’ve previously performed in theatre, do you hope to return to the stage this year?
I mostly did theatre when I was younger and still living on the East Coast. I loved my time doing A Christmas Carol, I love Christmas and it was even cooler to be performing at the famous Ford’s Theatre. I’m not sure if I’ll return to the stage for theatre, definitely for my music though!
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