Justin Ray, a San Diego native, accumulated a few different nicknames in his early childhood. The first? ...Thunder Thighs. Not only did he have thick, chubby, hobbit feet (which he has yet to grow out of) but he also had massive thighs. Which provides a seamless transition to his next nickname: Couch Potato. His favorite past time? Put him in an oversized t-shirt, stick a bottle in his mouth, plop him on the couch, and start up a movie... bliss. Luckily for him, his next nickname slimmed those big thunders to a more appropriate size. Monkey Boy started after he developed an incessant need to climb anything and everything he could get a grip on.
When Justin wasn’t talking to his invisible friend The Purple Kid, he was busy expanding his imagination with his older brother building forts, playing legos, or acting in home made movies and short skits. Sometimes his imagination got the best of him while watching, with tears streaming down his face, his brother beat up The Purple Kid. Its safe to say this Monkey Boy was sensitive. But he was no weakling. With impressive coordination, no fear of heights, and natural flexibility, the Couch Potato learned that he was a pretty darn good gymnast for a 4th grader. But then 6th grade rolled around, along with a girlfriend, and suddenly this gap toothed, past Thunder Thigher decided that gymnastics took up too much time... someone should have nicknamed him DUMBASS after that.
With his future wife by his side (or some might say behind, cracking the whip), Jr. High was a bubble filled with love letters and floating hearts for this hopeless romantic. Romeo just had to figure out what his career was going to be after high school. With an above average GPA there were many possibilities for Justin to consider. As far as personal interests go, nothing seemed to land. In grade school he wanted to be a professional stunt man, which naturally transitioned to a veterinarian (he was, and still is, an avid animal enthusiast). But after discovering love, Justin thought he’d be a great marriage counselor. However, during his junior year of high school, the love bubble he had been trapped in for the past 5 years suddenly exploded. Juliet was no more and Justin still had gapped teeth.
Now in his last semester of his Junior year, the eligible bachelor invested in some train tracks to connect the grand canyons that were impeding on his smile. It was then that a shift occurred. With an aunt’s encouragement, Justin auditioned for his first musical. The stars aligned. His every fiber wanted more as he became a human sponge soaking in everything that would improve his craft. Brace Face learned that his coordination, flexibility, and gymnastic past rendered him to be a natural dancer. After graduating high school, and now with a perfect smile, Justin continued training with voice lessons, dance and acting classes, and performing in many musicals around town. After getting an AA degree at a community college, he transferred to UC Irvine, majoring in Drama. Shortly after, his yellow-brick-road of musicals called him to the broadway scene. But then another shift occurred to a more silver hue. Justin heard the potato from his past calling from the couch, “GO TO HOLLYWOOD!”.
And that is where we find Justin Ray today. “I thank God for His amazing grace while I pursue my dreams, and providing me with the most loving and supportive family I could ever ask for. I am truly blessed.”