TV Source Magazine had the chance to speak with Days of our Lives starlet Victoria Konefal about her life, the character she portrays and the motivations that drive her. We wanted fans to walk away from our feature having learned more about her as a person, as well as an actress. In our exclusive interview, Konefal opens up about her background and her hopes for her character. But there’s one question that she refused to answer!
From the moment Ciara Alice Brady blew back into town on her father’s Harley with a chip on her shoulder, we knew that we were in store for a version of the character that we had never seen before. Victoria Konefal came in like a wrecking ball, shattering expectations and captivating fans at every turn. From her initially bratty “take no prisoners” attitude, to the ever growing, healing young woman she has turned into, viewers have been enamored with the legacy daughter of Bo and Hope Brady, and the Brooklyn native who portrays her.
We want to thank you so much for taking the time to speak with us today
Yeah, of course.
We’re so excited to talk to you today because we are big fans of yours as are our reader as you have topped our TV Source Pulse Poll every week since we brought it back.
Yes, I’ve seen that on Twitter! So sweet!
First, I want to ask you how your vacation to Greece was. It looked gorgeous from the pictures you posted on Instagram.
Yeah, it was amazing. It’s absolutely my favorite country that I’ve ever visited. I fell in love with the culture, the food, the landscape. Everything about it. The language, I love the language. I love the way it sounds. Everything about it just makes me want to go back immediately.
We did see that it was rough travels though. Looks like you were laid over for a while.
(laughs) You know what, the airline made it really hard for me to get there but when I did, I made the best of my experience.
You did get your luggage back, right?
I did! Eventually I did. It took them about five days to get my luggage back which traveled to Russia apparently. It was terrible, but I made do with what I had. But I’m not going to lie, it was difficult for me to keep my composure.
Part of the reason why I asked you that is because I follow you on Instagram and I know that you’ve said in the past that you’re not really that active on social media but you’re trying to get back into it now. Was that a decision that you made early on to separate yourself or to keep your personal life off of social media?
Totally. I’ve always been very secretive about my private life. Even before my life started creeping into the public eye, I’ve never liked sharing personal things online because I just feel like that’s not the right time and place for me. So, I never cared for social media. It always stressed me out. The idea of having to impress this imaginary group of people that give you imaginary likes. It’s a fabricated world that I really didn’t want anything to do with. But once I saw how active my fans were with me and how supportive they were, I thought that I owed it to them to be more active and I’m trying to have fun with it. So, I’m not really censoring myself on social media. I’m just being my authentic self. I’ve been really active with stories lately, I’ve been posting a lot on Instagram. I just want to keep my fans looped in with what’s going on with my life because they care, and I just want to give back what they give me. There’s so much love and I just want to give it back.
I will say that you picked the right platform because Instagram is a lot better than Twitter. I would avoid it at all costs if I were you.
(laughs) Yeah, up until a couple months ago I didn’t even use Twitter. I had maybe 30 tweets total since I got it. I never cared for it very much. I think Instagram is a much better platform for me.
You were born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. I’m sure there are stark contrasts between that and your life and L.A. What are some differences, or what are some things that you miss about New York that you don’t have in L.A.?
I miss the weather for sure. I don’t miss the freezing cold, but I miss sweater weather. I miss wearing hoodies and boots and leather jackets. That’s everything about my style. I love the dark colors and warmer articles of clothing. I just love wearing hoodies and sweaters. I miss that for sure. I miss the high speed of life that you live when you’re in New York, you know? You walk through the streets and everything is so fast, and I feel like you get a lot more done faster. Whereas in L.A., it kind of always just feels like you’re on vacation. I guess in the end it’s great because you’re always relaxed. But I miss the hustle and bustle in New York City for sure and I miss Brooklyn. I miss everything about it.
Is there something about New York or Brooklyn in particular that you know about that no one else does?
It’s difficult to say because I didn’t experience adult life in New York. I didn’t have a chance to wander around and really see things. And every time I come home I’m always with my mom and she steals me for the entire time. But I would say Dumbo is my favorite spot in New York. It’s absolutely my favorite. You have the Manhattan skyline, there’s amazing food, the atmosphere is great. And then there’s Williamsburg and Greenpoint. That’s another area that I grew up in. Those places are my top two for sure.
I read that you drove across country in a snowstorm. What was the story with that? How old were you?
I think I was 18 turning 19. I had my license for 6 months and I was planning that trip to move to L.A. for so long and of course the weather comes on and there’s a big snowstorm. So, I thought I was going to outdrive it because according to the weather I had plenty of time. As I was driving, my mom kept calling me with updates that were calling it the biggest blizzard we had in like four decades and the radius of it kept expanding so no matter how far I drove, it was like it was moving with me. I drove for something like 22 hours straight. And I finally ended up in Tennessee and I had to stop. I ended up in Nashville and the roads got way too slippery. I couldn’t drive on them anymore. So, I got a hotel to stay the night. I woke up and the snow falling had subsided, but it was so icy on the roads. I had to drive at ten miles an hour the entire time. I witnessed cars in front of me veering to trees going 10 miles an hour. It was the most terrifying thing I’ve ever experienced. I was supposed to go across Tennessee but instead of that I just went south and ended up in Alabama. It wasn’t a part of my plan to end up in Alabama, but it was fun.
Was there a catalyst that made you decide that 18 was the age that you were going to leave New York for L.A.?
I grew up in New York and I did the theater scene and I fell in love with film and TV at a really young age as well. It just never seemed like something that was attainable because I had no idea where to start. New York City is a huge place and I didn’t know what to do. And then finally, I was going to college, and I booked a film. So, I had to leave because I’m not going to not take an opportunity that has something to do with my dream. So, I dropped out of college for the time being, did the movie and that gave me the courage and the incentive to just be like, ‘you know what, I can do this. If I can book this then I can book something else.’ So, I knew that L.A. was the place you needed to be for film and TV. I also had agents out in New York that were bi-coastal. They were working in New York and L.A., so they actually recommended it to me and I pitched it to my mother. It was terrifying, but she was super supportive and totally on board with the entire thing.
Of the projects that you did when you got to L.A., I see that you did the Wrong Crush with Lesli Kay and also Deadly Exchange with Lindsay Hartley. These are both known veterans to Daytime. Did they talk to you about the genre or share any experiences with you that made you want to do Daytime?
What’s really funny is that both of them knew about my Days of our Lives audition. The audition process took a couple of months. I had filmed both movies while knowing about the audition. But the first time I heard about it was when I filmed The Wrong Crush and randomly Lesli walked up to me on filming day and said ‘have you ever considered soap operas?’ And I said ‘you know what, that’s hilarious because I just got an audition for a series regular on Days of our Lives.’ And she said ‘shut up!’ And so she coached me on it.
I auditioned, I didn’t hear anything for a couple of months and then when I started filming the Deadly Exchange, it got brought up again. My agent called me and they said, ‘hey they want to see you.’ And I said really? I thought it was over. I thought they had cast it. It had been four or five months already. And then I talked to Lindsey about it because I knew she had been on Days and well as Passions. So she also helped me and that’s when I started auditioning consistently for it. They kept bringing me in the room. I went in that room for a total of like seven times. And I booked it two weeks after we wrapped the Deadly Exchange. I called her and we were celebrating, we were ecstatic. I texted Lesli about it. She congratulated me, it was great.
Is there anyone in your family who were soap opera fans?
Yeah, my mom was always a soap opera fan. I’m a first-generation American. My mother moved to America from Poland when she was 19, and when she first got here she watched the show every day for years to learn the English language. She was a huge fan of the show and her favorite characters on the show were actually Bo and Hope Brady. So I call her with the news that ‘hey Mom, I’m going to be playing Ciara Brady, Bo and Hope’s daughter!’ And that made the news all the more exciting for her.
As an actor you often hear “no” more than “yes”. When you left from New York to L.A., were you prepared for auditioning process and that you would hear no more times than you would hear yes? And how do you deal with that?
Totally. This is an industry filled with rejection. So, I’ve been getting rejected. Like in high school I auditioned for a play and I got rejected. I made it to the top three and then I didn’t get it. So, I’ve been preparing for it. And also, I auditioned a lot before I got out L.A. I went on a ton of auditions and got nothing. It’s not like it came easily for me. I went on 80 to 100 before I booked my first role. It’s kind of disheartening but you have to keep in mind that it’s what you’re passionate about. And I would rather audition and fail and strive to do what I really love to do than spend the rest of my life being miserable doing something I hate. That’s what I kept in mind. I’m never going to take no for an answer. I’m always going to keep trying and that’s my mentality about it.