Lovely Sunday again Presh Nation, we’ve got another beautiful story to tell. This time its Gbemi Akinlade, Medical student and actor who’s our guest. She’s so much fun to be with, Enjoy.
PRESH: Good day, please introduce yourself to our readers
GBEMI: Hi, I’m Gbemi Akinlade. Currently, I’m a 4th year medical student of the College of Medicine, University of Lagos. I’m also an actor. 😁
PRESH: I’m Pleased to welcome you Gbemi. Tell us a little more about you
GBEMI: Thank you very much for having me. It’s an honor to be here. I think I have already said all the interesting things I have to say about myself 😭. I don’t think there’s much more to say 😅 Except of course you want me to bore you and everyone else with details like my favorite colour or food? 😂
PRESH: 😂 let’s just move forward. Where did you grow up? and how was life growing up?
GBEMI: I grew up in Badagry, Lagos. Life was very peaceful. Badagry is a slow-paced community. No one’s rushing anywhere yunno. I have four [hilarious and awesome] siblings so it was a FULL house but it was so much fun. My parents were strict but still so cool. There were so many people around me and my family so yeah, I enjoyed every bit of my childhood and I was a bit of a geek so I also spent a lot of time reading which I thoroughly enjoyed. Wish I had the time or cared as much now 💀.
That’s pretty much it.
PRESH: They say medical practitioners are heavy readers, could that have been the source for you?
GBEMI: If you’re referring to the major influence on my choice to study medicine, it’s more of my dad being a doctor himself, than it is my previous love for reading.
However, I did really well, academically in primary and secondary school so that just facilitated my decision making and that’s how I’m here now.
PRESH: Did you start acting before you started studying medicine or was it the other way round?
GBEMI: I started acting when I was in 200 level of medicine and surgery.
PRESH: Which movie did you first work on? and how did you get the slot?
GBEMI: My first project was Prayer Request directed by Femi Johnson.
News I’ve received is that it’ll be in cinemas this year.
I got the part through auditioning really. I saw the audition call on Instagram, I sent in my pictures and I was invited to the audition. Pretty much.
PRESH: Was that your first time auditioning for any role at all?
GBEMI: Yes, it was.
And now that I look back, I really don’t know what made me send in my pictures or actually go to the audition 😅.
PRESH: 😂 Fate I’d say. How has your acting journey been?
GBEMI: Fate huh? Okay 😅
My journey in acting has been so much fun. It’s a huge privilege to be able to do this thing I enjoy thoroughly. I’ve met a lot of amazing people, and I’ve been pushed to points that I didn’t know I had the capacity to reach and I’m so grateful for that because growth is the most important thing.
And I wouldn’t trade my experiences so far in film for anything in the world. I love every part of it. 😅
PRESH: Interesting. Is there any part of your growing up that you ever imagined acting would be your thing?
GBEMI: This question will always be funny to me because I think it’s the craziest part of the whole thing now.
One time I asked myself this question and I realized that I used to say, when I was wayyyy younger, that I wanted to be a doctor and an actor. Those exact two things. Then growing up, I basically zeroed in on just getting into school to study medicine, and I forgot about the other part of my dream. Then here I am, years after, back on track.
I consider it a miracle, to be honest, because who would’ve thought that 10 year old me was the most accurate dreamer 😹.
So yeah, I did imagine it as a child 😅
PRESH: Wow, I should beg you to dream about me 😂 anyways, what does it feel like, seeing your dreams come to reality
GBEMI: 😂 it only works when you dream about yourself. It feels surreal most of the time.
I just think to myself: “Yooo this is really happening. Can you believe this?”
I have a really long way to go but I’m just so thankful to have been given the opportunity at all.
It’s an amazing feeling. Even though it’s super hectic combining work and school, I love the thrill.
PRESH: I was going there, how do you cope? School is super tough already, not to talk studying to be in one of the toughest professions, then, combining that with acting. How do you go on set and not think of Y chromosomes, also, how do you write exams without thinking of the thrill of hearing Action! or Cut!
There’s been times that I’ve almost died, shuttling between school and set, yes. But a number of factors come into play to help keep me balanced.
1) Whenever I’m about to start a project, I explain to the directors and producers and co-actors, literally everyone on set that I have school, so they are always kind enough to work out a convenient schedule for me. So that’s awesome.
2) I DEFINITELY do not think about chromosomes when I’m on set please 😂. Work is my escape from all of that so why would I do that? I try to be in the moment wherever I am and make the best of it.
3) it’s taken quite some sacrifice on my part to get the work done in both aspects. I can miss school a few days to go on set (which will backfire as having more to read in shorter time), then ask for many of my scenes to be crammed into the days that I take off school so I can knock them out at once before going back to school.
It’s really stressful but I gotta do what I WANT to do 😂. So yeah, I fall ill sometimes even, because of the strain on my body, but I don’t mind. I love it 😁
PRESH: Hmm, intense. Apart from school, what other challenges have you had to face in acting?
GBEMI: I think every job has its basic intrinsic challenges.
For acting, there’s things like memorizing lines, standing for hours, repeating scenes until there’s a perfect shot, doing research on new characters you have to play, and things like that yunno. Nothing’s easy, but that’s the job.
PRESH: Are there any projects you’re working on presently or you just completed?
GBEMI: I’m not working on any projects currently. I’m just staying indoors and trying to be safe, I mean there’s still a pandemic right?
But the last project I filmed was DOD directed by Akay Mason and Abosi Ogba, in February.
PRESH: Great, You’re also a model?
I don’t think I’m worthy enough for that label yet 😅. I don’t wanna take that away from people who actually identify as models and whose main job is modeling yunno. So I would say that, yes I take pictures but not on a major scale so far.
PRESH: What would you say is your dream project?
GBEMI: Right now, for a number of reasons, I really wanna be a part of the HBO Euphoria cast 😹
But like an ultimate dream project, I haven’t quite penned one down yet.
PRESH: Random: what can’t you do without?
PRESH: 😂 foodie I see, what advise would you give people who want to be like you?
GBEMI: 😂😂 food is supreme
My advice to people who want to be like me huh?
I don’t know why anyone would want to be like me. If you want to be like Rihanna now, I can understand that😹😹😹
But more seriously, I can’t help anyone be like me but I can share my ultimate truth with everyone which is: you can do whatever you want so, do whatever you want. Literally just do whatever you want to do and whatever makes you happy. As long as you’re not hurting anyone, do your thing.
PRESH: Hmm, this is deep. On a parting note, please say hello to your fans and lovers
GBEMI: I don’t know if I have any fans or lovers out there but I’m gonna say hi anyway, and I appreciate the love. And I love you right back. Thank you very much ❤️
PRESH: Thank you so much for your time, I really hope to see you on the biggest screens soon
GBEMI: Thank you very much Precious. Had a great time talking with you.
PRESH: Always a pleasure, peace ✌🏾
Do whatever you want to do, a lot of dreams have died because “what would people say?” As my mum would always say, your life is in your hands. Ire oo 🥂