Actress & Writer
Currently Starring in 'Workin' Moms' on Netflix
We are beyond thrilled to have had the opportunity to interview the amazing Juno Rinaldi, who currently stars in the International Emmy Nominated series we all know and love, 'Workin' Moms' on Netflix.
Juno is originally from Vancouver, BC, is an award winning actor and playwright, and has collaborated on numerous theatrical productions across Canada
Since moving to Toronto, Rinaldi has had the pleasure of starring in the series regular role of Frankie Coyne on 'Workin' Moms'. The show has captured the attention of moms everywhere as it opens up an honest and real conversation about motherhood. The characters are relatable and it's finally a show about something we all struggle with; the transition back to work and everything that comes with it: career, family, relationships, etc.
We talked to Juno about the show, how she prepared for the role of Frankie, and her advice for all workin' moms out there! Her honest and authentic voice gives women everywhere more strength and courage that they're not alone.
The Returnity Project: Tell us about yourself and how you got involved with the show 'Workin' Moms'?
Juno Rinaldi: I have been acting professionally since I was 17. I was lucky enough to book a lead role on an iconic Canadian Film directors, Anne Wheeler’s Feature, called The War Between Us when I was 17 and that kind of sealed the deal for me. I knew that that is what I wanted to do. But it wasn’t an easy road after that at all. I picked up bit parts here and there, went to Studio 58 at Langara College in Vancouver, BC and trained for Theatre, wrote collectively with my Theatre troupe, picked up all sorts of odd jobs - I have wanted to sit down for awhile now and write out that job list, cause some of the things on there are CRAZY. You just do what you can, really. To get by. Many, many, many times I tried to do other things, like give up the business for good, but I just never could. I kept hanging on. And then the audition for Workin’ Moms came along and I guess Catherine saw something in me that would fit for Frankie. And voila! Here I am.
TRP: This show has gained amazing momentum in both Canada and the U.S. What value to you think this show is bringing to working moms everywhere?
JR: That we’re all in this together. That we are all going through it together. That the thoughts and fears and frustrations you are having, we are ALL having too. The challenges of Motherhood are universal. Where we get stuck is in the belief that we are alone. The amount of people who have come up to me and said “ YOU ARE SAYING EXACTLY WHAT I AM THINKING!!” is huge. That to me is the biggest win. That our show, Workin’ Moms is in some small way, connecting us all.
TRP: Many of the stories we've shared on The Returnity Project focus on both the challenges and beautiful moments of motherhood; specifically the return to work. What was the return to work like for you? Was it different with each child?
JR: I am not a typical “return to work story”. I am lucky enough to have an incredibly supportive loving husband who is also in the business. So right from the get go with our first kid we have always shared all the duties equally. If he’s on a job, I am home. If I got a job, he’s home. So much of both of our identities are intrinsically linked to who we are as artists. So to take that creative outlet away and just focus on “being at home” we knew we would both suffer. We tried to keep it as balanced as we could. Now, of course we failed many many times. But our goal was always to try and support the other’s creative passion.
That said, when our second was born I was SO deathly afraid of being “forgotten” in the business that I raced back into rehearsals for a show too early. I see that now. Our baby was weeks old and the worst sleeper and I was running on pure adrenaline and anxiety. Needless to say I crashed, hard. It wasn’t till the show had closed that I realized I had Postpartum Depression and Anxiety. It was a case of too much, too soon. So hard though when you are in the arts and it really feels like you will be forgotten if you don’t jump at every chance to work you get.
TRP: Frankie is our favorite character on the show because of how real and authentic she is. In the show, Frankie is dealing with postpartum depression, and we love that the show is tackling this topic head on. How did you prepare for this part of the role?
JR: Ha! Well I had PP. Ok, its not funny, but yes, it was something that I new intimately and was very familiar with.
I loved how they tackled this topic in the show too. Its so so common, but again, not talked about much. Frankie really rides the fine line of darkness and light in season one and I love that about her. From my own experience it was so much like that as well.I would have great days where things were wonderful and funny and I was filled with so much joy for my new baby. And then there would be other days that were incredibly dark and worrisome.
I, like Frankie at the end of season one also got help from an amazing organization in Vancouver, BC called The Pacific Postpartum Support Society. They were my life line. It’s funny how Frankie and I had very similar story lines. Not planned at all! I love that though. Life imitates art.
TRP: What advice would you give to other working moms?
In this moment, there is plenty of time.
In this moment, you are precisely as you should be.
In this moment, there is infinite possibility.
TRP: What are you most proud of?
JR: This one, for some reason was so hard to answer! I want to say all the things that you would expect, my kids, my husband, my work, but I think the thing that I am most proud of is my willingness to grow and expand as a person. It’s not easy. Not easy at all. But I am proud of myself for taking the hard knocks of life and working “with” them. Trying to learn from them and grown from them. I think we can get really stuck if we just assume this is the way my life is, or this is the way things go. Kids also keep you expanding, they keep you questioning and re evaluating yourself all.the.time. I am grateful for that.
TRP: Anything else you want to share? Maybe when 'Workin' Moms' Season 2 & 3 will be released in the US on Netflix?! ;-)
JR: Oh man, I wish I knew! I am so glad there are mothers all around the world right now loving this show. It brings me back to how connected we really are.