Each week, Marple Newtown Patch will seek suggestions from readers for individual kids, youth groups, teens, and even sports teams that wow us with their accomplishments. This week, we highlight Episcopal Academy singer and actor Gregory Smith.
Patch Whiz Kid of the Week: Gregory Smith
Whiz Kid's Name, Age: Gregory Smith, 11
Whiz Kid's School: Episcopal Academy
Whiz Kid's Accomplishment: At just 11-years-old, Gregory Smith has already had his share of the limelight at several well-known stages, including the Walnut Street Theatre and Media Theatre. Gregory's first musical was in Oklahoma when he was just 7-years-old. He also played Oliver–one of his favorite roles so far in a musical– in Oliver! at the Walnut Street Theatre.
His most recent stint had him on stage at the Keswick Theater in Glenside with 10-year-old child prodigy, musician, composer and actor Ethan Bortnick. The two then went on tour to sing in New York City to benefit the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. The sixth-grader won a singing competition sponsored by KidzBop, in which Gregory won from hundreds of young participants.
Whiz Kid's Key to Awesomeness: Perhaps it was his theatre-going parents or his mother who used to sing around the house when he was younger, or his great grandfather who was a singer and actor himself, that inspired Gregory to sing and act. But what he knows for sure is that "two of my favorite things are acting and singing."
Although Gregory doesn't have a personal singing or acting coach, he's signed up for theatre classes at the Media Theatre since he was about the age of 5 or 6. During an upcoming audition or role in a musical, Gregory spends hours practicing after school. He credits his success to those classes as well as to "my mom who gives me the talent but also my dad who helps me practice," said Gregory.
Already been under the bright lights, Gregory dreams to one day be on the "big stage."
"I would really want to be a broadway actor or a singer and maybe make up my own songs," said Gregory.
His advice to others: "Keep going; if you practice a lot you'll get a shot."
Editor's note: Know a great kid who made Eagle Scout or did your local soccer team take the championship? They may be our next Patch Whiz Kid honoree. We want to hear about these amazing children and teens and select one each week as the Patch Whiz Kid.