Middle name: Francis
Biography: Kendall Schmidt stars in the new Nickelodeon live-action comedy series Big Time Rush as Kendall, the lead singer of the new “princes of pop” music group.
Born in Wichita, Kansas, Schmidt was raised in nearby Andover and grew up the youngest of three brothers who all caught the acting bug. After watching his two brothers, Kenneth and Kevin, travel back and forth to Los Angeles, Schmidt decided he also wanted to be an actor. While it began as “something fun to do,” Schmidt quickly became passionate about pursuing a career in the entertainment industry. “My first acting memory is starring in a Chex cereal commercial with my brothers. Even though we went to the audition separately, we were cast to play brothers,” he recalls.
When he was 10 years-old, his family finally made the move from Kansas to California. Schmidt soon landed recurring roles on General Hospital, Titus, Raising Dad, Gilmore Girls and CSI: Miami. He also guest starred on series including ER, Mad TV, Frasier and Phil of the Future and most recently, Without a Trace and Ghost Whisperer. On the big screen, he appeared in Minority Report, AI and Lions Gate’s According to Spencer.
In addition to acting, Schmidt’s other love is making music. Within the last three years, he has learned to play guitar and has honed his vocal skills from singing in the car with his mom to recording in the studio. Inspired by “Incubus,” his all-time favorite band, and “Taking Back Sunday,” Schmidt also writes his own music. Another source of inspiration is his family. “My whole family has given me the drive to succeed,” he said. “My brothers mean the world to me. They keep me grounded and offer a different perspective when I need advice.”
Schmidt was drawn to his role in Big Time Rush by the music. “Acting comes naturally to me but I think I am best at music,” said Schmidt. “If I could combine both loves, then I am successful.” Schmidt identifies with his character, who suddenly finds himself thrust into the limelight, trying to get a handle on being a part of a music group. His character Kendall’s attitude is to enjoy the ride –and Schmidt plans on following the same advice.
When he is not focusing on his music and acting, Schmidt likes hanging out with his friends or being outdoors, whether it’s to rock climb, surf or skateboard. Schmidt lives in Los Angeles with his two dogs, cat, bird, tortoise and python.