Finding Purpose in Passion x Keiynan Lonsdale
It’s 8:00 am in the morning, I’m hunched over a desk in a room about the size of a small walk-in closet. The only place in the office I could secure privacy. The commute downtown was particularly rough this morning and its raining…again. But as soon as the publicist says the magic words; “Hi David, I have Keiynan on the line” all is forgotten. Keiynan Lonsdale was GQ Australia’s Breakthrough Actor of the Year. All though most would say he’s already broken through whatever threshold one needs to to be considered a bonafide Talent in Hollywood. “Hey, how are you doing?” Keiynan says cooly and confidently. Like the way, most of us try to sound when you approach your crush at the bar. Although for Keiynan that effortlessly cool cadence, isn’t something he has to pep himself up to have. It’s a hallmark of who he is, it’s sincere.
When asked about the award and what it meant to him, it’s clear he is genuinely honored, although he is quick to recognize the other great talents coming out of Australia. It was an incredible honor, it was a really cool recognition, there are a lot of really great actors that are up and coming.” Keiynan doesn’t need the spotlight, but the spotlight is drawn to him. He is no stranger to big stages, cast in the mega-blockbuster Divergent series, as Uriah to his upcoming movie Love, Simon, it’s clear Keiynan knows how to handle himself on screen. He also stars in the CW’s hit show The Flash as Wally West a.k.a Kid Flash, and now a series regular on CW’s Legends of Tomorrow. Yes, Keiynan works a lot!
His newest film, Love, Simon is a coming out age story of a gay teen balancing friends, family, and his feelings. The message the movie delivers hits especially close to home since he himself came out to the world in an Instagram post last May. “I want people to receive a stronger self of sense from Love, Simon, as well as also know that they are not alone. To genuinely believe that they are worthy of having true love no matter who they are.” When talking about inclusion and self-worth it is apparent this is a driving motivation in his life and work. Keiynan isn’t in acting for the cheque or even for the fame, he is in it for something more “I find that I prefer working on things that have a deeper message behind them…I’m lucky I can be selective in the way I want to be selective. There are three things I look for in a role. One; Will I be challenged by this role and really grow as an actor? Two; Will this have a positive effect on society and will it make people think? Three; will I have a good time and make a lot of memories? As long as it ticks one of these boxes it's something I will go for."
Few have the privilege to turn their passion into their life’s work. Those who do often don’t have the vision to use it for a greater purpose. At 26, Keiynan Lonsdale has already turned his passion into his purpose.
Ohh… Did I mention his makes music too? Legends of Tomorrow just wrapped so what is he going to do with his new-found free time? “I’m going to take some time to focus on my music, so I’m really excited about that!” Keiynan's latest single “Good Life” is a booming song about the wonder, fun, and excitement when you discover real love. It’s infectious and the hook will have you swaying back and forth wanting to put your
lighters up. Keiynan's upcoming music may also have more of an R&B influence. “I naturally have a bit of an R&B voice so it will have that influence. I’m going to experiment with a lot of different sounds. I find music genres have been meshing a lot these days. I want to go in with the idea of making music that just feels right.”
In a world that is constantly sending you messages to change this, fix that and love this way, doing what feels right can be a lost art. But maybe with stars like Keiynan Lonsdale in the for-front, square pegs will stop being forced into round holes and instead have the freedom to just be a square peg…or better yet just another peg.