Kevin Richardson

Kevin Scott Richardson (born October 3, 1971) is an American singer, model, actor, composer, best known as a member of the Backstreet Boys.

Early life

Richardson was born in Lexington, Kentucky to Ann Littrell and Jerald Richardson; Richardson is the cousin of fellow "Backstreet Boys" member Brian Littrell, as Richardson's mother and Littrell's father are siblings. He grew up on a 10 hectare farm in Irvine, Kentucky with his parents and two older brothers (Jerald Wayne Jr. and Tim). He spent his childhood in the outdoors, and could already ride a horse at age 4. As a youth, he enjoyed sports and dirt bikes. Kevin lived in a log cabin until he was eighteen. Richardson also liked acting as a teenager. He belonged to his high school's drama club and was a captain of the Estill County High School's football team. After his high school graduation, Richardson, intent on leaving his mark in the show business world, left for Orlando, Florida with his brother Jerald, where he earned a living as a model, tour guide at Walt Disney World and dance instructor. At age 19 he received sad news: his father died on August 26, 1991 after a two year battle with cancer.

In Florida, he worked as a cast member in Walt Disney World. He was a backstage tour guide and costume characters, most notably as Aladdin and one of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. There he also met his future wife Kristin Willits, who was playing the character of Belle from "Beauty and the Beast." He worked at Walt Disney World until he joined the Backstreet Boys in 1993.

Career

Richardson struggled to get any important show business jobs until the middle 1990s, when he auditioned for a new band forming in Orlando. He was chosen for the band, along with Nick Carter, Howie Dorough and AJ McLean. The band was soon named "The Backstreet Boys". Kevin Richardson was convinced that his cousin, Brian Littrell, could also join the band as a singer, and, after travelling back to Lexington, he convinced Brian to fly down to Orlando for an audition. Soon after, Brian was chosen as a member of the band.

The group became famous worldwide during the late 1990s, and Richardson travelled extensively to many different parts of the world while on tour. Once the tours were over, the band kept busy by making cover photo sessions for such magazines as Tiger Beat, 16, Teen Beat and others. He did some modeling for Versace collection in 1998. In November 1999, Richardson was named People magazine's "Sexiest Pop Star"; he also dislocated his shoulder while snowboarding.

As the oldest member of the group, he was one of the most vocal in terms of addressing to the media. Despite being a tenor like the other group members, he has the lowest vocal range and thus provided the lower harmonies.

He appeared in Krystal Harris's music video "Supergirl!", from the "Princess Diaries" soundtrack as the guy grilling at the fast food joint at the end of the video.

In 2002, he played the role of "Billy Flynn" in the Broadway production of Chicago. He also performed this role in London's West End as well as Toronto in November–December 2006. In June 2006, Richardson left the Backstreet Boys to pursue other interests and "move on with the next chapter of [his] life."

He issued the following statement on the band's website on June 23, 2006

"After 13 years of what can only be described as a dream come true, I have decided that it is time to leave the Backstreet Boys. It was a very tough decision for me but one that was necessary in order to move on with the next chapter of my life. Howard, Brian, Alex and Nick will always be my little brothers and have my utmost love and support. I would like to thank the Backstreet fans for all the beautiful memories we have shared together and look forward to including you in the next phase of my life. I wish my brothers continued success and look forward to their new album."

On November 23, 2008, for the first time after he left, Richardson rejoined his former bandmates on stage in Hollywood Palladium, LA. He performed the encore, "Shape of My Heart" with the group.

The Backstreet Boys, including Richardson, appeared on the November 4, 2010, episode of The Oprah Winfrey Show. Richardson first appeared in a pre-taped segment in which they surprised a fan who thought she was merely being flown in to participate in a "Backstreet Boys' Biggest Fan" contest. Moments later, Richardson joined the group in the show's studio and performed "I Want It That Way" live with them.

On July 1, 2011, Richardson again rejoined the Backstreet Boys on stage at Staples Center, Los Angeles, as part of the NKOTBSB Tour. He sang "I Want It That Way" with the group and the mash up at the end of the show along with NKOTB members.

"Being back with my brothers again feels great. I love these guys. We have gone through so much together. We just have a chemistry... a bond that will always be." —Kevin Richardson, Rolling Stone

On the October 25, 2011, episode of On Air with Ryan Seacrest, Richardson announced that he was going to be at a Backstreet Boys beach party in Nassau, Bahamas, on December 3, 2011. The party is part of the group's second annual cruise. In addition to being in the party, Richardson performed several songs with the group on the boat in the evening. In the announcement, he also stated that he would love to perform with the group again on a more regular basis.
On April 29, 2012, during a live show in London, Backstreet Boys confirmed that Richardson was back permanently with the group and would be recording a new album with them in July 2012. Richardson also appeared along with the group on Good Morning America on July 17, 2012, announcing his return, their new album, and their first performance as a five-piece group since 2006 at the morning show's Summer Concert Series on August 31, 2012.
In an interview with On Air with Ryan Seacrest on July 24, 2012, Richardson explained that the reason he came back to the group was because he realized how much joy singing and music gives him. He mentioned that the Christmas concert he did in December 2011 helped him rediscover his love of music and how much he missed it.

Solo career

In 2003, Richardson composed the soundtrack of an animated movie, The Spirit Bear, which was due out in 2010.

On December 18, 2011, he headlined a Christmas concert titled "Home for the Holidays" with Rob Gonzalez. The concert was hosted by Montage Beverly Hills luxury hotel and it benefited The Angeles Clinic Foundation of Los Angeles.

In 2012, Richardson began working on his first solo album. The album will include songs that have influenced him over the years. The album was supposed to be released in 2012.

Modeling career

He has been a model for Versace. He also modeled for Vogue and is a brand ambassador for TAG Heuer.

Acting career

Along with the rest of the Backstreet Boys, Richardson has made appearances on Arthur,Sesame Street,Sabrina the Teenage WitchandThis Is the End.

In 2003, during Backstreet Boys' hiatus, Richardson played the role of Billy Flynn in the Broadway production of Chicagoand in 2003, he made an appearance on Punk'd where he got punk'd by Ashton Kutcher.

On November 14, 2006, several months after he left the Backstreet Boys, he returned to New York City with many Chicago alumni for the 10th anniversary of the show. From late November to December 3, 2006 Richardson played the role of Billy Flynn in Toronto, and from February 4 to March 4, 2007, he played the role in Japan. He also returned to Japan to play the role in late September and early October 2009.

Richardson starred in his first TV movie in the 2009 Christian drama Love Takes Wing, based on a book by Janette Oke. He played the role of Cyrus.

In 2010, Richardson starred in The Bloody Indulgent, a vampire themed musical film. In the same year he also starred opposite Susan Traylor, Daniela Sea, Pleasant Gehman, Garrett Swann and Michael Maize in Steve Balderson's feature film drama The Casserole Club. Richardson received an Independent Vision Award for Best Actor for his performance in The Casserole Club at Vision Fest in New York City in 2011.

Also in 2011, he starred in a short film, Unwound. It is an entry for Producers Guild of America premiere Weekend Shorts Event contest to benefit the Debra Hill Foundation. The film only took 51 hours from script to final cut.

In 2013, Richardson and the other Backstreet Boys appeared as fictional version of themselves in the comedy film This Is The End.

Personal life

On June 17, 2000, he married former Rockette and Cher back-up dancer Kristin Willits-Richardson. Their engagement was announced on MTV in February 2000, and married at Lee County's Cathedral Domain in rural eastern Kentucky. Together they have two sons, born in 2007 and 2013.

KTBSPA” isn't just a motto for us, the fans.
It's much more!

 

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