A.P.R.I.L -“Strive For Your Dreams,” Says Sarah Nia
Sarah Nia believes in striving for your dreams– she defied all odds, leaving her home in Tehran, Iran, to become an American-Iranian actress in the United States. Sarah is on a mission to empower women like herself. “Strong women of Iran and across the world deserve to be treated with respect; we are powerful and creators of good and can do and be whatever you want!”
Sarah was born in Tehran and ever since she was a child, she wanted to be an actress. At just 12 years old Sarah was in stage plays. Sarah knew she was different from other kids. “I didn’t think I was beautiful and had little confidence, but I loved the spotlight.” Sarah came to the United States on a student visa, following her family’s wishes to be a doctor, obtaining her degrees, until one day she decided to drop out. Sarah wanted to act.
There are actors in Iran, but because of religion, women work with a Hijab (head-covering) and face strict rules as an actress. Women cannot express emotions or touch a man in the movies because they are not related in real life. Sarah was unable to give the organic emotion in acting she longed for. Unable to express herself with this barrier, she left to pursue her dreams in the United States.
Now living in the United States, Sarah is determined to pave her own path in a different direction – to be a successful Iranian actress in America. “I’m trying to become an actress in the US during a time that the US is banning Iranians from coming to this country because they call us terrorists; well I am not, and have to work more than anyone else to prove myself.”
Defying all odds, Sarah is following her passion in acting. Sarah will be showcased at the Cannes Film Festival 2017. She plays the character Isha, in the film, ‘In Search Of Light’. Her character is a strong Arabic woman, escaping her family and tribe in Iraq to be with a Kurdish man, going against her family’s will and religion.
Sarah is currently training at the New York William Esper Studio School for Acting and is learning the Meisner acting technique. She also trained at the Alan Goldberg School learning Wing Chung and Kung Fu Martial Arts. Sarah was awarded the Rising Actress in Martial Arts in the MMA annual magazine.
Sarah is proud of who she is — a woman with ideas, trying to help others to strive for their dreams. “It doesn’t matter who or what ethnicity you are, you are as important as any other person in this world.”
Sarah aspires to one-day work with Asghar Farhadi, an Oscar-winning Iranian filmmaker.
APRIL sat down with Sarah to ask her a few questions about herself.
Do you consider yourself a leader?
“Yes, I am. I stand up for everyone who I think needs support and whenever other people choose to stay quiet, I’m the one who speaks up.”
How do you define empowering women in few words?
“Believe in yourself, you are a creator.”
What institutional and societal changes need to be made for woman rights?
“I think we should educate them more. Until women themselves believe that they are capable and strong, nothing will change.”
What were your struggles?
“I didn’t fit in Iran. Now I am in America and I feel so happy and free. I’m very emotional and imaginative, and now I am in America and I feel so happy and free.”
Are you a superhero?
“Yes. I believe every human being can do extraordinary things if they believe they can. We can motivate people and they will act like superheroes in real life.”
Do you believe women are sexualized in media?
“Yes, absolutely, I believe they are and I’ve auditioned for roles in big budget movies and was asked to take my shirt off, because it sells more. In my eyes, this is abusive.”
How do you feel about your body?
“I love my body and everything else about myself.”
If I could do one thing to change the world into a better place, what would it be?
“To put love in everyone’s heart, and for all humans in the world to live in peace.”
Follow Sarah on Instagram : @Sarahniaofficial