by Christian McCarville
“I’ve been locked in my apartment with my cat and I’m losing my mind,” said Devon Werkheiser as he kicked off his guest appearance on 107.7 The Bronc’s “Quarantunes.”
Werkheiser is most frequently recognized for his role as Ned Bigby in the hit Nickelodeon show “Ned’s Declassified: School Survival Guide.” In the show, Ned offered advice on how to survive the hardships of school. Through his music and social media presence, Werkheiser continues to give advice to his fans and viewers.
Taking place on 107.7 The Bronc’s Instagram page, Werkheiser hosted a live stream where Rider students could join and talk to him. This live stream is a part of a series of events hosted by the radio station titled “Quarantunes.” The premise of these events involve artists playing live music virtually and interacting with students.
Werkheiser, sporting a Rider Broncs shirt, evidently enjoyed responding to the many comments that students posted on the Instagram live. He delivered a special shoutout to all of the seniors who had their final semester cut short due to coronavirus (COVID-19).
“This is a very fast life change that we have no control over,” said Werkheiser in regard to the social distancing measures that have greatly altered the lives of many. “If you’re feeling anxious, depressed, confused, overwhelmed… that’s appropriate.”
Werkheiser empathetically asked the audience how they were doing during these troubling times. He offered advice on how to overcome the emotions that are sure to arise as a result of the ongoing pandemic.
“Do what you can as often as you can to ground yourself,” advised Werkheiser. This includes activities such as meditation and working out.
Audience members also had many questions about “Ned’s Declassified” and Werkheiser was happy to answer them. He even provided fans with an update on the fan-favorite character Coconut Head. Werkheiser explained that Coconut Head is a DJ in Los Angeles and they catch up from time to time.
Werkheiser also told a few stories from his time on the set of “Ned’s Declassified.” Most notably was his experience during the show’s prom episode.
“I was an actor. I was homeschooled and I didn’t have an actual prom,” explain Werkheiser.
Therefore, the prom episode replaced the experience that he had missed out on.
Werkheiser also provided his insightful outlook on fame and the acting industry. Student actors asked questions about the process of securing large roles and being successful as an actor. Werkheiser truthfully spoke on the difficulty of breaking into the acting industry but encouraged all those who had dreams of making a career out of acting.
While Werkheiser did not attend college, he jokingly said that he would’ve majored in accounting. He explained that accountants will always have a secure job, especially compared to the music and acting industry. The accounting majors present in the audience were surely happy to hear this.
“Being an accounting major, it’s a compliment to hear him say that he would have gone to school to learn to account,” said sophomore accounting major Cory Mayo. “If [Werkheiser] ever needs accounting help, we are all here to teach him.”
After answering many comments, Werkheiser began to talk about his music. He explained that the purpose of his music is to express a truth that is meaningful to people. He excitedly told the audience to look forward to his upcoming EP titled “Chapter One” that will be released on April 23.
Werkheiser grabbed his guitar and performed two songs from the upcoming EP. His first song “Revolution” was enjoyed by the many students in attendance.
“For all of us solely knowing him from ‘Ned’s Declassified,’ it was weird realizing that he can sing phenomenally,” said Mayo. “You can feel the emotion in his voice and relate to his music. He’s just like us in a way, celebrities are humans too.”
The second and final song “Miles” was written several years ago after Werkheiser had gone on a trip across the country with his girlfriend at the time. On the way home from this trip, he got into an intense argument with his girlfriend. This left Werkheiser feeling an assortment of emotions that inspired him to write the song.
After concluding his performance, Werkheiser brought two audience members onto the live stream and briefly talked with them.
As his time on the live stream came to an end, Werkheiser wished the best for all those going through a difficult time. His empathic advice and passionate music were sure to have a positive impact on all those tuning in to “Quarantunes.” Werkheiser’s admirable positivity was incredibly helpful in making Rider’s quarantined students feel a little less isolated.