Madeline Kendall is a performer based in New Jersey - though she calls the road home as she travels with the national tour of Broadway’s Anastasia! As someone that grew up in a musical household, she was inspired to begin dancing and competitive gymnastics before the age of 6. However, it wasn’t until 7th grade during an audition for Pippin that Kendall decided to drop her initial career path as an orthodontist and pursue performance professionally! After graduating from Wagner College during the pandemic, she tours the nation as both the Anya understudy and ensemble of Anastasia, and has performed in shows such as Miss Saigon, Our Town, and Somebody in Everybody! Her advice to young artists? “Stay true to who you are! Don’t compare yourself to other people. You have something to offer, not something to prove!” Read on to learn more about Madeline Kendall and what makes her an Amazing Asian in the Arts!
Name: Madeline Kendall
Heritage: South Korean-American
Hometown: Gloucester County, South Jersey
Current City: On tour!
Current project: National Tour of Anastasia the Musical as Ensemble and u/s Anya
What are some of your favorite credits/projects:
Rebecca Gibbs in Our Town (Peterborough Players), Ensemble in Miss Saigon (Broadway Theatre of Pitman), Somebody in Everybody (WCT)
Any advice for young people getting into the arts?
Stay true to who you are! Don’t compare yourself to other people. You have something to offer, not something to prove!
How did you get your start?
My mom is a music teacher. So I started singing with her for as long as I can remember. I started dancing at my local dance studio when I was 2 or 3 and then I started competitive gymnastics when I was 5. I was always performing. Although, it wasn’t until the 7th grade when I realized I wanted to perform as a career.
What have you found is the biggest challenge in your career?
Currently, the biggest challenge for me is balancing the work and giving myself what I need personally. While being on tour you are constantly with other people and “at work” so I have had to find time to be with myself and do things for myself.
What are some interesting facts about yourself?
I’m adopted from Seoul, South Korea. I love coffee, Grey’s Anatomy, food, and shopping!
Who do you admire?
I admire my mom. She is my #1 supporter. She loves the arts and here I am following in her footsteps!
Do you have any mentors?
My Mom, Lisbeth Bartlett, and John Scacchetti.
Did you always want to be in the arts or did you have another path before you got here?
I always loved performing and being on stage. As a kid however, I really wanted to be an orthodontist (lol) but I am definitely happy with my choice!
When did you know you wanted to have a career in the arts?
I would say it was in the 7th grade when I auditioned for Pippin at my high school. I realized I could do all the things I loved - singing, dancing, gymnastics, and acting!
Do you have any other “special skills?”
I was a competitive gymnast for 8 years. I also did a little bit of acro/contortion!
If you could go back in time, what would you tell your younger self?
I would tell my younger self to not listen to other people’s negativity and also to not overthink the little things. Everything will work itself out even if there’s a funky way to get to it.
What skills did you find to be the most helpful in your career?
Being prepared and always putting your best foot forward no matter what.
Where did you study at?
In high school I had private acting lessons with Lisbeth Bartlett (Philly, PA) and I went to college at Wagner College, NY.
What is your greatest accomplishment?
My biggest accomplishment thus far would have to be understudying Anya on the National Tour of Anastasia. It has taken me a long time to feel confident in my singing abilities. So this is definitely a huge deal for me!
What helped you most to rebound from what you considered your biggest failure or mistake in your career?
I have a great support system. It’s so easy to feel like you have failed or aren’t good enough in this industry. My family, boyfriend, and friends are what really help me to rebound and keep going!
Do you have any self care practices you do to stay focused and sane? What was your self care routine before the pandemic and how has that (as well as your views of self care) changed throughout the pandemic?
I was still in college before the pandemic. So graduating and being sent home in 2020 changed a lot. I had to learn how to self care back in my childhood home, away from friends, and isolated. My family, keeping up with exercise, journaling, FaceTiming friends, all really helped!
How do you prepare for a role you consider difficult personally, whether it hits too close to home or goes greatly against your personal beliefs?
If the role is difficult personally or hits too close to home I like to let myself go to that sad; dark place in private while working on the material as much as I can - live in it and feel all the feels. Once I’ve done it a lot I feel as though I have more control while performing and sharing that part of myself with an audience. If a role goes against my personal beliefs I just like to stay open minded to the other side and listen to what my character has to say.
To find out more about Madeline Kendall, please visit her at:
Comments will be approved before showing up.