We recently interviewed Eduardo Enrikez, a distinguished alumni of Eagle Hill, to discuss his memorable experiences at the school and his successful acting career.
What Brought You To Eagle Hill?
I’m originally from Mexico City. My father set up a business in Manhattan and our family lived in Greenwich.
I was previously at Greenwich Country Day School for nursery school and kindergarten. My three older brothers attended GCDS as well. My oldest brother Jorge was diagnosed with dyslexia first.
He attended Eagle Hill before me. I was then diagnosed with dyslexia and followed in his footsteps to Eagle Hill one year later.
What Did You Learn At Eagle Hill That Helped You Manage Your Learning Difference?
I was so young I didn’t even know what dyslexia was. All I knew was that I was following my older brother to a new school. Once I started at Eagle Hill, I noticed that the class sizes were much smaller. Attention to every student’s needs was ever-present. I was taught reading, writing, and math with games. It didn’t feel like a typical school, it felt very organic.
I remember when my older brother Alejandro came in with me for a day. He was surprised that we would be playing games in class. We were playing games, but it was a learning method. I remember him saying, “This is fun.”
Tell Us About Your Educational Journey After EHS
After four years at EHS, my family moved back to Mexico City. I spent four years there learning in Spanish. I could speak Spanish but I couldn’t read or write in Spanish. So, I had to relearn in a different language. After that I went to boarding school in Geneva, Switzerland.
I had to learn another new language and how to speak and write in it. Six years later I was fluent and literate in three languages—English, Spanish, and French.
I finished high school in Mexico City and embarked on a career in the arts. I got my Bachelor’s in Film & Video from The Surrey Institute of Art and Design in Farnham Surrey, England.
Afterward, I studied musical theater at The Royal Academy of Music in London, where I was just given the Associate of the Royal Academy of Music Award, which is awarded to alumni who have made a significant contribution to the music profession or to society in general.
Any Words Of Advice For Current Students?
Find your passion and make it your responsibility. Work hard, take risks, and listen to your heart. Fear exists in all of us—don’t let it stop you from following your dreams. Travel the world and live in a different country with a different culture. Most importantly, love your family and your friends.
How Did You Become Interested In Performing Arts?
Unfortunately, I lost my father when I was 12. We were living back in Mexico City at the time. A year later, I was sent to boarding school in Switzerland with my brother Alejandro for two years.
The summer I turned 16 we were in NYC and my mother took us to see “The Phantom of the Opera” and “Les Miserables” on Broadway. As a 16-year-old Mexican without a father and with three older brothers, the thought of showing weakness or being vulnerable was not in our DNA.
But as I sat in those theaters watching the life of Jean Valjean in Les Miserables, seeing this man amongst men be vulnerable, strong, and watching him fight for meaning and purpose blew me away. Watching the Phantom fall in love with Christine and ultimately set her free opened my heart.
These larger-than-life men can love, express emotion, follow their hearts, and fight for meaning and truth was what I needed to see and experience for myself. I bought the soundtrack to those shows and others and realized I could imitate their singing and that was it. I’ve never stopped singing those stories. I had finally found an outlet to channel my grief, my fears, my love, my passions.
This journey took me to the Royal Academy of Music in London and, after I graduated, I had my first starring role in an Off-West End musical called Eating Raoul.
Tell Us About Some Of Your Acting/Performing Experiences—What Has Been A Particularly Meaningful Experience For You?
I’ve had the honor of working across so many forms of art - from acting in big West End Shows to being a contestant in the reality TV show Big Brother Mexico, to writing films, producing theater, and composing musicals.
The experience that most stands out for me is working at the 24th Street Theater in Los Angeles teaching inner-city minority children. These students had never set foot in a theater the magic of theatre through improvisation techniques, incorporating production components of sets, sound, lights, and live music.
The fact that they were able to see another Latino teaching them these skills was truly priceless. They felt represented and included.