UPDATE: Ellen DeGeneres said she wanted to bring Kalen Allen onto her show – and she made it happen! Just before finals week in mid-December, Kalen flew to Los Angeles to tape a hilarious segment with Ellen herself. Kalen made his network television debut on “Ellen” on Jan. 2.
Kalen Allen’s talents and personality caught the attention of Starlight leaders when he auditioned for and won a Vincent Legacy Scholarship in 2009. Now, he’s grabbing attention on a much wider scale since candid recipe “critiques” he’s posted on YouTube have gone viral
Count Ellen DeGeneres, comedian Seth Rogen, model Chrissy Teigen and actors Jessie Williams of “Grey’s Anatomy” and Debra Messing of “Will & Grace” among the legions of Facebook, YouTube and Twitter fans that Kalen’s creativity has attracted. In fact, on Dec. 7, his hilarious critique of a green Jello salad (was it really a salad???) aired on “Ellen,” and, when it concluded, she gave a shout-out to the Kansas City, Kan., native and invited him to contact her and come on the show!
The Kansas City Star posted an interview with America’s new favorite online food critic, too. In it, Kalen talked about his surprise at this newfound fame, shared a few more videos and, of course, comments – “Cornbread? How in the world do you gentrify cornbread?!” and “Sweet potato pie: They put cheese in this? Absolutely not!”
Our favorite part of the Star article was Kalen’s response to this question:
Q. How long have you been interested in acting?
A. I’ve been acting my entire life. I won a scholarship through the Starlight Theatre in Kansas City in 2007 (actually, it was 2009, but who’s counting). I had always performed, but that scholarship allowed me from that moment on to do more professional things. So I did shows with Musical Theatre Kansas City, the Starlight Gala, things like that.
Kalen is a 2014 graduate of Sumner Academy of Arts & Science in Kansas City, Kan. He is now a senior majoring in film and theatre at Temple University in Philadelphia.
Congratulations, Kalen! We’re proud of you – and we’re laughing right alongside your many new celebrity friends!
Photo at top: Kalen Allen (center) performed at the 2014 Starlight Theatre Gala with fellow Vincent Legacy Scholarship recipients Courtney Germany (left) and Destané Doughty.