Kirkwood High School student newspaper

photo courtesy of Drew Redington

photo courtesy of Drew Redington

Where are they now: Drew Redington

Profession: Actor - Location: New York City - Class of 2015

Pretending to be each of the Von Trapp children, 4-year-old Drew Redington acts out and sings “So Long, Farewell” from “The Sound of Music” on the steps of his grandmother’s basement. His mother and grandmother sit watching, used to the routine of these frequent basement performances.

“That’s when we knew that [theater] was what he was passionate about,” Julie Redington, Drew’s mother, said. “It wasn’t until he was in middle school that I came to realize as a parent that he had the drive and talent to put all that together and actually make it.”

Drew graduated from KHS in 2015 and went to study musical theater at Elon University in North Carolina. He planned to get his degree, graduate and move to New York City to hopefully get a job at a theater. However, his plan was cut short when he auditioned for “Holiday Inn” on Broadway during his sophomore year of college.

“It was something I always wanted to do, and I couldn’t believe that I actually was going to do it,” Drew said. “I was emailed the offer, and I remember after that I probably walked around my college campus four or five times just because I didn’t know what else to do with myself.”

After a four-month audition process, Drew was cast in the ensemble of “Holiday Inn” at the Roundabout Theatre Company and moved to New York City. He said working on Broadway was one of the best experiences in the world, especially since theater has been part of his life since he was very young.

“You are surrounded by so many different types of people who come from different backgrounds and the best part about doing theater is no one’s journey is the same,” Drew said. “It’s one of the nicest and most welcoming communities you could ever be a part of. We were our own family.”

When he first came to KHS, Kelly Schnider, drama teacher, said Drew was a “pipsqueak freshman.” Over the course of his four years in high school he played a variety of roles from Lieutenant Cable in “South Pacific” to Patsy in “Spamalot.” Schnider said it was incredible to watch him grow as a performer and a person.

“He was always searching to stretch himself in all these roles,” Schnider said. “When it came to theater, he was never satisfied with ‘good enough.’ He always had something else to do because he loved it so much.”

And according to Drew, he could never see himself in any other career. Theater has always been a part of his life, and he plans to keep it that way. He knew, and his parents did as well, that Broadway was the best place for a boy who spent his childhood singing on the steps of his grandmother’s basement.

“I cried,” Julie said. “I just had this huge sense of pride, and it wasn’t just excitement. We could see all of the work and dedication he put into it and we knew it wasn’t a fluke. He was really going to be a success.”

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