Glee’s Kevin McHale: ‘Why I took a role in new movie The Choir’

Now that filming on the last-ever series of Sky 1’s Glee has come to an end, Kevin McHale has left William McKinley High behind for good.

But while fans in UK have a few months to go until the end of the high-school series, the actor, better known as wheelchair user Artie Abrams, can be seen in another school-based drama.  

He stars as a teacher in the new movie The Choir, released as Boychoir in the US, which also stars Hollywood legend Dustin Hoffman and Debra Winger, best known for her role in the 1983 movie An Officer and a Gentleman.

The film focuses on Stet (played by 12-year-old Garrett Wareing), an angry and troubled kid with a beautiful voice who ends up at a private choir school after the death of his alcoholic mother.

He doesn’t fit in with the other kids, who are privileged, highly-trained and intensely competitive, with one stealing his musical score before a concert as an act of sabotage.

Kevin says that exploring the issue of bullying was one of the things that attracted him to the script and that he took the part of teacher Wooly because he wanted to “expose” the world of elite children’s choir schools and the bullying that can take place.

Kevin McHale at the premiere of The Choir in Toronto (Brian Bettencourt/Invision)Kevin McHale at the premiere of The Choir in Toronto (Brian Bettencourt/Invision)

The 27-year-old actor, whose character Wooly helps Stet to navigate this new world, said: “We all know how kids can be, and how vicious kids can be.

“But especially in that sort of world, where they’re on their own in the school and it’s all about the music and it’s all about gunning for the top position. I really liked exposing all of that.”

The school is based on the American Boychoir School, a music boarding school in New Jersey.

Kevin added: “You see the gross underbelly of that world, which I didn’t even know existed.”

Dustin Hoffman stars as Master Carvelle (Brian Bettencourt/Invision)Dustin Hoffman stars as Master Carvelle (Brian Bettencourt/Invision)

Dustin Hoffman stars as Master Carvelle, the strict choir master, while Drake (Eddie Izzard) is his second-in-command.

The Choir is in UK cinemas now.

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