Nathan Bryon: ‘Have fun at every job because we’re actors, not brain surgeons’
My first professional job was a theatre in education play called Mind the Gap that was being performed in the Elgar room in the Royal Albert Hall. (I know – proper bouji for a TiE gig.) It was also filmed for cinema. I must have been around 17 or 18 and I was so happy to be getting paid to act.
I loved the gig, we had an amazing cast and I worked with one of my best mates, Karl Queensberry. We laughed so much and then every Thursday, when we got paid, we would go to Westfield [shopping centre in London] and rinse all our funds. I was totally nervous before performing and I still am. I have to get in a chilled place before going on stage. My character had big monologues that I always dreaded, so I was majorly scared of fucking them up, but it always went to plan. When it doesn’t, you see how quickly your body and brain react to keep you on the right path.
The tax bill comes and you are giving evils to your fresh Nike shoes
Looking back, I should have saved more money. Literally on the Thursday we would spend all our money for the next week. We never learned money management in the two months of that job. Then boom, the tax bill comes and you are giving evils to your fresh Nike shoes. I also learned to have fun at every job because we’re actors, not brain surgeons.
What I have learnt since, and the advice I would pass on to others, is that you have to make your own work. With any downtime just make stuff, perform somewhere, try to make yourself as busy as possible. Put yourself out there so people can see how great you are, because, even if it is a creative industry, not everyone has the imagination to know you can do it. Sometimes you have to show them when they aren’t expecting it.
CV: Nathan Bryon
Theatre: Mixed Brain
TV: Benidorm, Some Girls, Casualty
Agent: Malcolm Browning, MMB creative
Other credits: Writer for Rastamouse, Swashbuckle, Apple Tree House
Nathan Bryon (@NathanBryon) was talking to John Byrne