While living in Philadelphia, Fredrick traveled to New York to attend an open-call audition for another show. During this audition, he had the opportunity to meet a casting director associated with the acclaimed Harry Potter production.
“Not long after that, I became the audition reader for the first open auditions for Harry Potter on Broadway and continued in that role for six years,” explained Fredrick. “Eventually, I aged into the same range as the characters in the play, and when a role became available, I auditioned and landed the role of Ron Weasley.”
His favorite experiences along the way came from doing regional theater in the Dallas–Fort Worth metroplex, Kansas City and Philadelphia.
“I did not get a master of fine arts, so these experiences were really formative for me in continuing to develop and hone my skills as an actor and collaborator,’ said Fredrick. “Philly is also where I met and married my wife, Tabitha, so it’s extra special.”
Fredrick’s typical day commences with rehearsals at a studio in Times Square, which involves collaborating with new cast members and returning actors from the production. The cast then focuses on refining scenes, choreography and illusions in preparation for the large-scale production featuring intricate special effects and technical elements.“We also work on some beautifully written scenes that give audiences a chance to see these beloved characters 20 years later,” said Fredrick.
Q&A with Fredrick
Why did you choose to attend TCU?
I remember wanting to be an actor from a young age, even after some really disastrous plays in elementary school. I initially wanted conservatory training, but after doing some campus visits, TCU’s liberal arts environment just felt better to me. The theater program offered rigor and faculty support; it was the best of both worlds.
Who most impacted your TCU experience and why?
It’s impossible to single out one individual because everyone poured so much into the students, regardless of their focus or discipline. My experience was marked by continuous collaboration and respect. Professors such as Harry Parker, Jennifer Engler, Thomas J. Walsh, and Alan Shorter were all wonderful mentors, equally dedicated to our growth as individuals and artists. I also did work study in the costume studio where studio manager Michele Alford was like a second mother to me and many others.
What advice would you give to students pursuing a career in theater?
I’d encourage students to remember that there are many paths to success and many shapes that success can take. Of course, I’m thrilled to have this job and make a living as an actor, but a year ago, I worked in a local wine shop and was the happiest I’ve ever been. It’ll always be a challenge for artists to find that apart from our work, but I think it’s essential.