High school is a busy time for most students, but these days Darrow Klein has a more hectic time of it than most of her peers.
Darrow began acting professionally when she was just 10 years old. From that time, she’s done anywhere from one to four professional shows per year. And now, as a 16-year-old student at Fairview High School, she is starring as Anne Frank in the Arvada Center’s “The Diary of Anne Frank”.
“One of the coolest parts about it is that you get to give a story to someone,” Darrow said. “Story telling is the really important part of acting to me, and what you can give the audience is really cool.”
Since Darrow is busy with matinees and evening performances, her school schedule has changed. She does take some online classes as well as attending Fairview, and has been known to study during dinner breaks with the cast.
“Despite the success she has had, she remains humble and is a normal teenager who goes to school, does her homework, and hangs out with her friends,” said Jennifer Klein, Darrow’s mother.
Darrow takes dance and vocal lessons weekly, and gets most of her acting training over the summers.
“Darrow is naturally very effervescent,” said Christy Montour, director of the show. “She has an ineffable way about her that makes her captivating to watch on stage. What is also special about her is her ability take her natural talent and apply new techniques.”
Darrow is the youngest person in the cast, but Montour said it doesn’t stop her from holding her own.
“It was very important to me and the entire cast and production team that we support Darrow on this journey,” Montour said.
Darrow did her first play in kindergarten, and got her first professional role in the fourth grade.
“She wants to hone her skills as well as she can, and it shows in her performances,” Jennifer Klein said.
“They put up an audition notice for ‘Anne Frank’ and I thought it’d just be good experience,” Darrow said. Little did she know she would find out she booked the role a week later.
“The Diary of Anne Frank” is an impactful story to tell, and Darrow said she doesn’t take this lightly.
“Anne Frank is just a really cool story because it’s such an important one,” Darrow said. “Its something that is part of our history that we can put on stage and that we can interact with, which I think is really amazing. We do student matinees, which are so cool because it’s educating the next generation of theatergoers.”
“Darrow doesn’t put Anne Frank on a pedestal as a perfect child,” Montour said. “Darrow’s Anne is smart, funny, confused, energetic, contemplative, mischievous, silly, romantic and kind-hearted. And Darrow is not afraid to go to the dark places the play requires her to go to. She is very brave.”
Darrow has a big support system in her family and the cast of “Anne Frank”, which her mother expressed. She is excited to see what lies in Darrow’s future.
“We obviously want to see her name on a Broadway marquee someday, and we think that should happen for her, but we will be happy as long as she is happy,” Jennifer Klein said.
“The Diary of Anne Frank” will run until May 17 in Arvada at the Arvada Center.