Keiynan Lonsdale is a shining beacon, someone who is here to be seen. An individual of many talents and faces, who is for all of our fluid modern ideals only proving to become a high-powered, all-encompassing human of the future. Through his multiple skills that he showcases, he hurdles any age-old binaries and gender conformity with elegance. From walking at Paris fashion week to winning Best Kiss at the MTV Movie and TV awards, to say that he’s doing “bits” would be an understatement. If you don’t already know who Keiynan Lonsdale is, keep your eyes open and ears pierced- because he’s closer than you think.
Since discovering Michael Jackson at a tender age, a hopeful Keiynan immediately became engulfed in all things music and dance, gaining a scholarship at the age of 13 to pursue performing arts in the land down under where he grew up. Fast forward years later, Lonsdale became GQ’s Australia’s Actorof the Year on top of Breakthrough Actor of the Year by making appearances in your favorite films and TV shows such as Love, Simon, The Finest Hours on top of the iconic Wally West/superhero Kid Flash on both The CW’s and Arrowverse’s The Flash and DC’s Legends of Tomorrow on top of an array of additional exciting projects *cough cough* a Netflix film with Alicia Keys and Sabrina Carpenter *cough cough*.
Not that he falls short on the music front either, making a feature on Camila Cabello’s extravagant video for “Liar”as well as dropping a magically captivating clip himself for his single “Rainbow Dragon” ahead of his debut album. As exciting as life is for Keiynan Lonsdale, he was still able to spare a minute and speak to us about the joyride which is his life.
Was there a precise moment in which you decided to pursue performing full time? My first memories are of dancing in the living room and then on stage, so I can’t think back to a time where being a performer wasn’t my dream. For music specifically, I was about 14 when I began seriously believing in myself. For acting.. that belief and pursuit came when I was about 18.
What sparked your passion for it? I saw Michael Jackson on the TV when I was really little, and from there it was like I just knew where I was headed, all I could think about was music and movement and expression. It became an obsession, I practiced every single day and my mum instilled in me the importance of dreams.
You’re a triple threat– is there a form of performance art that you favor the most? I favor the journey of being a music artist most because that’s where I get to be completely free and incorporate everything in one, I’ll sing, I’ll dance, and I’ll play characters.
Congratulations on the new video “Rainbow Dragon!” You change between a number of personas throughout- what inspired this song and video? Thank you! It was born out of many things, certainly, anger and rage was part of it, a true badass sense of confidence, and then a comedown of crippling insecurity…it’s all of that…it’s just where I was at in my life. I also had been discovering these newfound characters that I think each of us has actually, they’re just energies at the end of the day… I wanted to show that.
Speaking of flexing your acting skills, you were recently spotted playing a major role in Camila Cabello’s video for “Liar.” What was that experience like? It was really inspiring being on such a big and positive music video set. Camila is a real pop star and Dave Meyers is legendary. We shot three days, had a lot of fun and laughs, and just played around with some whacky elements really.
You’re in the midst of working on upcoming film Work It, alongside Alicia Keys, Sabrina Carpenter, and Liza Koshy. Could you tell us anything about this project? What should we expect? It’s a dance comedy, so you can expect to be thoroughly entertained. We had a ton of freedom to play with these characters, I got to do something pretty outrageous and cool… I’m really stoked for people to meet him.
You’re an individual who doesn’t shy away from self-expression- have you always been able to do so? I’ve always felt at home on stage, but outside of that, I grew up extremely shy. Arts were special to me because they helped me find my people and feel like myself. Expression is everything to me, we are all quite weird and creative and funny, especially when we are living truthfully, so why pretend otherwise? It isn’t easy for me to express myself through, despite what it may seem, that’s why I have to do it… There’s magic and love on the other side of fear.
Speaking of which, what advice would you give to yourself 10 years ago? “Dreams come true when you’re truly good to your heart. I’ll see you soon brother… time flies.”
Despite how intense world events may be at the moment, what about life has you happy and excited? Great music and art. Traveling and discovering new places. And when I really feel I’ve forgotten how to find happiness, dancing usually reminds me that the possibilities are endless.