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Broadway Lights Fuel Teen's Dreams

Kristen's Broadway Wish

“ Kristin lit up the whole entire weekend ”


- Kristin's mom

Nearly two years ago while at SIU Healthcare to treat her life-threatening gastrointestinal disorder, 13-year-old Kristin and her family learned about Make-A-Wish. At the time, however, staying overnight at the hospital and getting tests done were part of a normal routine for her and she said that her one true wish would be to get out of the hospital, so they decided to postpone a wish. Last spring, Kristin had a surgery that has given her the opportunity to lead a little more of a typical life, and her family decided it was time for her wish journey to begin.

Nearly two years ago while at SIU Healthcare to treat her life-threatening gastrointestinal disorder, 13-year-old Kristin and her family learned about Make-A-Wish. At the time, however, staying overnight at the hospital and getting tests done were part of a normal routine for her and she said that her one true wish would be to get out of the hospital, so they decided to postpone a wish. Last spring, Kristin had a surgery that has given her the opportunity to lead a little more of a typical life, and her family decided it was time for her wish journey to begin.

For years Kristin has been listening to the soundtrack of Hamilton whilst becoming extremely interested in singing and dancing herself and wished to go to New York City to watch the show in person for her wish she was ecstatic.

Through Make-A-Wish, the family traveled from their central Illinois home to New York City and found it truly is the city that never sleeps. Kristin and her family decided to join the excitement and enjoyed checking out Kristin’s favorite spot in the city, Times Square, at 1 a.m.

“Kristin was enthralled with Times Square,” her mom, Jennifer, said.

Kristin wanted to see as many shows as they could while there so along with seeing Hamilton they also saw Be More Chill, Mean Girls and a comedy show. In fact, one of her favorite parts of the trip was meeting Broadway star George Salazar who is best known for originating the role of Michael Mell in Be More Chill.

Kristin’s wish took place on the day of her thirteenth birthday so before they went to go see Hamilton they went out to eat at the Beetle House, a Tim Burton themed restaurant, because Kristin loves Tim Burton. Kristin enjoyed her birthday meal with visits from Edward Scissorhands and Beetlejuice as she kept saying that this was her favorite birthday ever!

And then, she absolutely loved watching Hamilton, and her mom loved watching her watch it. She was thrilled to have a meet and greet with some of the cast members, especially when she saw her favorite cast member, Anthony Lee Medina who stars as John Laurens and Philip Hamilton. Along with her life-threatening gastro-intestinal condition Kristin also lives with Asperger’s so she typically doesn’t show emotions and she definitely doesn’t like being hugged. But when she saw Anthony Lee Medina, Kristin started crying and ran up to give him a great big hug, which was an extra special moment for her mom to see.

“It was like having an opportunity to be completely different kid for a weekend,” her mom said.

Kristin loves to sing herself as well, in fact, she shared her wish with her voice coach. Both Kristin and her voice coach are big fans of James Iglehart who plays the Marquis de Lafayette and Thomas Jefferson in Hamilton. When Kristin met Iglehart at the meet and greet, the first thing she did was FaceTime her voice coach to share her wish.

“Kristin couldn’t even take a moment to be selfish for the first time,” her mom Jennifer said. She had rehearsed a song to sing for Igleheart but realized that she and her friend wouldn’t both have time to sing him a song so she let her friend sing and she danced along for him. After their song and dance performance, the actor told them that they are both truly talented which gave them a boost of confidence and encouragement to continue their passions.

Kristin is typically very private, but ever since her wish her mom said that she has been very vocal about everything. Her wish experience has given her a new reason to keep fighting for her dream of being on stage someday. For now, Kristin is a part of her school’s drama club and has recently signed up for an improv class. But most notably, her mom told us that Kristin has been smiling a lot more lately since her wish than she has in a very long time.
  • Kristen's Broadway Wish

  • Kristen's Broadway Wish

  • Kristin meets Broadway actors Austin Scott and James Monroe Iglehart

  • Kristin meets Broadway actor Marc delaCruz

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Make-A-Wish® Illinois
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