Kevin McHale (actor)

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Kevin McHale
Kevin McHale by Gage Skidmore.jpg
McHale at San Diego Comic-Con in July 2010
Born (1988-06-14) June 14, 1988 (age 32)
  • Actor
  • singer
  • dancer
  • radio personality
Years active2005–present
Musical career

Kevin Michael McHale (born June 14, 1988)[1] is an American actor, singer, dancer and radio personality. Formerly of the boy band NLT, McHale is known for his role as Artie Abrams in the Fox comedy-drama series Glee. From 2014 to 2016, he hosted the British panel show Virtually Famous on E4. McHale is currently one of the four hosts of Sick of My Own Voice on Dash Radio.[2]

Early life[edit]

McHale was born in Plano, Texas to Christopher McHale and Elizabeth Payne, the youngest of four children. McHale is descended from immigrants from County Mayo, Ireland.[3] He grew up with actress and singer Demi Lovato.[4] He attended Academy of the Canyons High School in the Santa Clarita Valley in California.[5]



Before becoming an actor, McHale joined the American boy band NLT, which stands for "Not Like Them". They were discovered by Chris Stokes in 2006, who subsequently signed them to his label, The Ultimate Group. On March 13, 2007, they released their first single, "That Girl". The following month, they opened (with Chantelle Paige) for The Pussycat Dolls.[6] The band also made a guest appearance in the film Bratz: The Movie as an auditioning band. While in the group, McHale, along with Timbaland and his bandmates, co-wrote the song "She Said, I Said (Time We Let Go)".[7] On April 30, 2009, member Travis Michael Garland announced that NLT had split.

McHale, who has a record deal with Universal Music Group, writes original music in his spare time. In an interview with Mario Lopez, McHale stated that he plans to pursue solo music post-Glee.[8] In 2015, McHale, Chris Moy, and Justin Thorne co-wrote the song "Heartless" which was featured on the latter's debut EP The Heartbreaker. That same year, he starred in the music video for Thorne's song "Summer Nights".[9] In April 2019, McHale released the pop song "Help Me Now", directed by Justin Thorne. The accompanying music video stars McHale and actor Nolan Gould. McHale described the video as having "a bootleg kinda gay Wes Anderson vibe."[10] In June 2019, he released the song "James Dean". The accompanying music video stars McHale and Pose actor Johnny Sibilly.[11]

In 2019, he competed in The X Factor: Celebrity, in which he finished in seventh place.[12]


McHale (top row, second from left) with his Glee co-stars in August 2009

In 2007, McHale made a guest appearance on NBC's comedy series The Office in the season four episode "Launch Party", portraying a pizza delivery boy who is taken hostage by Michael Scott (Steve Carell). He then guest starred in three episodes of Nickelodeon's teen drama series Zoey 101 as Dooley Fibadoo. In 2008, McHale guest starred in two episodes of HBO's dark fantasy drama series True Blood, appearing as Neil Jones, a coroner's assistant.

In 2009, McHale landed his breakout role as Artie Abrams in the Fox musical comedy-drama series Glee. His character, who uses a wheelchair after a car accident, joins the McKinley High glee club in the first episode. He had his first solo performance on the show when he sang "Dancing with Myself" in the episode "Wheels". In the episode "Dream On", he danced in a fantasy sequence to "The Safety Dance", and sang "Dream a Little Dream of Me". In the second-season episode "Britney/Brittany", he sang a solo (in a dream sequence) of "Stronger", after being anaesthetized for dental surgery. He also danced in a dream sequence alongside Harry Shum, Jr. to Michael Jackson's song "Scream" in the third-season episode "Michael". McHale, along with the main cast of the series, was nominated for the Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series four times, winning in 2010.[13]

In 2010, McHale appeared briefly in One Call's music video "Blacklight" alongside former NLT bandmate Justin Thorne, who was a member of One Call. In June 2011, McHale appeared in Katy Perry's music video for her song "Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)" as the character Everett McDonald.[14] On July 22, 2012, McHale co-hosted the 2012 Teen Choice Awards with Demi Lovato.[15] In January 2014, it was reported that McHale would host a comedy panel show, Virtually Famous, for the British digital television channel E4.[16] The show also features comedian Seann Walsh and radio presenter Chris Stark as series regulars and team captains.[17]

On February 24, 2014, it was announced that McHale had signed on to play a supporting role in the Kathy Bates and Dustin Hoffman led independent film Boychoir. McHale's character, Wooly, is a young music teacher who helps a troubled young boy at his school.[18] In July 2014, it was announced that he and Aaron Tveit had signed on to star in the comedy film They Might Be Kennedys. McHale will play one of the leads, Teddy Mulligan.[19] In April 2016, McHale joined the cast of Dustin Lance Black's drama miniseries When We Rise as AIDS activist Bobbi Campbell.[20]

Personal life[edit]

In September 2012, McHale and his dog Sophie appeared in a PETA ad campaign, promoting the adoption of shelter animals.[21] In June 2016, the Human Rights Campaign released a video in tribute to the victims of the 2016 Orlando gay nightclub shooting, in which McHale and other celebrities told the stories of the people killed there.[22] In September 2016, he co-created the mobile app +ONE, created with the intent to "provide people with one app to simplify the process of creating events."[23] He resides in the Hollywood Hills.[24]

In April 2018, McHale came out as gay with a tweet.[25] He is dating actor Austin McKenzie.[26]



Year Title Role Notes
2007 Ruthless Neighbor Neil Short film
Bratz: The Movie Boy Band Member With NLT
2010 One Call: Blacklight Short film
2011 Glee: The 3D Concert Movie Artie Abrams Concert film
2014 Boychoir Wooly


Year Title Role Notes
2005 All That Mark Episode: "On-Air Dares"
2007 The Office Delivery Kid Episode: "Launch Party"
2007–2008 Zoey 101 Dooley Fibadoo 3 episodes
2008 True Blood Neil Jones 2 episodes
2009–2015 Glee Artie Abrams 113 episodes
2010 2010 Teen Choice Awards Himself Co-host
2012 2012 Teen Choice Awards Himself Host
2014–2016 Virtually Famous Himself Host
2015 The Numberlys Task Master (voice) Television short
2016 HeILa Kevin Episode: "House Sitting in LA"
2016-2017 We Bare Bears Barry (voice) 2 episodes
2017 When We Rise Bobbi Campbell Miniseries
I Want My Phone Back Contestant #2 Episode: "Solo Artist"
2018 Nailed It Himself Episode: "First Date to Life Mate"
2019 The X Factor: Celebrity Himself Contestant
2020 Elite Bill McKinley Episode: "Nadia and Omar"
2020 Royalties Switchback Jacket Gutiarist Episode: "I Am So Much Better Than You at Everything" Television short

Music videos[edit]

Year Title Artist Notes
2007 "That Girl" NLT Himself
2009 "She Said, I Said (Time We Let Go)" Himself
"Karma" Himself
2010 "Blacklight" One Call
2011 "Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)" Katy Perry Everett McDonald
2014 "Somebody Loves You" Betty Who
2015 "Summer Nights" Justin Thorne Himself
2019 "Help Me Now" Himself Directed by Justin Thorne
"James Dean" Himself Directed by Justin Thorne.
Special appearance by Johnny Sibilly.

Video games[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
2018 The Inpatient David Miller (voice) Voice motion, and capture

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Work Result
2010 Teen Choice Award for Choice TV: Breakout Star Male Glee Nominated
Teen Choice Award for Choice Music: Group Nominated
Gold Derby Award for Ensemble of the Year Nominated
Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series Won
2011 Nominated
2012 Nominated
2013 Nominated




  1. ^ "Glee: Kevin McHale". Wetpaint. Archived from the original on January 8, 2015.
  2. ^ Clarke, Kristyn (May 2015). "Kevin McHale Talks DASH Radio Show "Sick Of My Own Voice", Saying Goodbye To GLEE And More!". PCM World News.
  3. ^ Live with Regis and Kelly – August 5, 2011 episode.
  4. ^ "Demi Lovato Talks Hosting Teen Choice Awards With Friend Kevin McHale". MTV News. July 23, 2012.
  5. ^ "Glee Stars' Real Yearbook Pics!". Us Weekly. June 3, 2010. Retrieved August 25, 2020.
  6. ^ "Pussycat Dolls were pretty tame". Evansville Courier & Press. April 11, 2007.
  7. ^ "She Said, I Said (Time We Let Go)". Warner/Chappell Music, Inc. 2014.
  8. ^ "Interviews: Kevin McHale". iHeartMedia. February 9, 2015.
  9. ^ Ashagre, Aggi (September 4, 2015). "Former 'Glee' Star Kevin McHale Makes His Musical Return With Justin Thorne on 'Summer Nights': Exclusive Video Premiere". Billboard.
  10. ^ Wong, Curtis M. (April 22, 2019). "Kevin McHale Sheds His 'Glee' Persona With Quirky Music Video". HuffPost. Retrieved April 22, 2019.
  11. ^ Wong, Curtis M. (June 7, 2019). "Kevin McHale Of 'Glee' Is Ready To Steam Up Your Summer With A Video That's Sexy AF". Huffington Post. Retrieved June 7, 2019.
  12. ^ Duke, Simon (October 12, 2019). "When is X Factor: Celebrity on? ITV show returns with star lineup". Evening Chronicle. Retrieved October 12, 2019.
  13. ^ "16th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards scorecard". Los Angeles Times. January 23, 2010. Retrieved January 24, 2010.
  14. ^ Mapes, Jillian (June 13, 2011). "Katy Perry Parties With Rebecca Black, 'Glee' Cast in 'Last Friday Night' Video". Billboard.
  15. ^ "Kevin McHale to Co-Host Teen Choice Awards". TV Guide. July 22, 2012.
  16. ^ Fletcher, Alex (May 19, 2014). "Glee star Kevin McHale to host new E4 panel show". Digital Spy.
  17. ^ Finbow, Katy (November 26, 2014). "Glee star Kevin McHale's Virtually Famous gets two more series from E4". Digital Spy.
  18. ^ Kilday, Gregg (February 24, 2014). "Debra Winger and Eddie Izzard Join 'Boychoir'". The Hollywood Reporter.
  19. ^ "Aaron Tveit & Kevin McHale Headed to Hyannis Port for Big Screen Kennedys Comedy". July 14, 2014.
  20. ^ Goldberg, Leslie (April 26, 2016). "ABC's Gay Rights Mini Enlists Michael K. Williams, Sets All-Star Guest Cast". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved April 27, 2016.
  21. ^ "Kevin McHale & His Super Cute Dog Stump for PETA's Pet Adoption Campaign". Access Hollywood. September 6, 2012.
  22. ^ Brown, Jay (June 29, 2016). "49 Celebrities Honor 49 Victims of Orlando Tragedy". Human Rights Campaign. Archived from the original on July 1, 2016. Retrieved June 30, 2016.
  23. ^ "GLEE's Kevin McHale Launches New App Available Today on App Store". BroadwayWorld. September 19, 2016.
  24. ^ Beale, Lauren (April 18, 2012). "'Glee' star Kevin McHale dances into Hollywood Hills". Los Angeles Times.
  25. ^ "Glee's Kevin McHale Comes Out...With Help From Ariana Grande | E! News". April 20, 2018. Retrieved June 14, 2018.
  26. ^ "Kevin McHale Accidentally Gave Boyfriend Austin McKenzie Salmonella: 'He Should Break Up with Me'". People. August 3, 2020. Retrieved September 6, 2020.
  27. ^ "Boy". Spotify. Retrieved June 21, 2019.

External links[edit]

Media offices
Preceded by
Kaley Cuoco
Teen Choice Awards host
Succeeded by
Lucy Hale and Darren Criss