Don't Forget to Smile: A Chat with Alex Bowie

I first had the pleasure of meeting Alex Bowie at a party that a mutual friend was having in June of 2015. As soon as he walked in the door, everybody at the gathering directed their attention toward him and he started giving out hugs and asking everybody how they were. That’s when I knew there was something special about him. Later, when I got to know him after introducing myself, we discovered that we'd both be attending U of T in the fall. I was so excited to have found a new friend and I’ll be completely honest, I did everything I could in order to make sure that we would connect. Alex is one of the most positive people I have ever met in my life. His boisterous personality and his trademark smile is contagious to anybody around him.

Alex is currently a first year student in the Faculty of Music, studying Vocal Performance (he’s really good!).

(Picture above: Alex in front of his photo wall in his dorm room, all of them of special moments with his friends and family).

 

Name: Alex Bowie

College/Faculty: Faculty of Music, Residence at Vic

Relationship status: Single

 

Everybody says you’re very kind, do you agree with them?

Okay, I think I agree. I try to approach each day with positivity and a smile on my face, and I like spreading that to other people around me. It feels good because I get something in return from that. So yeah, I like being kind to others.

Where do you think that comes from? It’s pretty easy to descend into negativity when times get tough but you keep the positivity going.

Probably my mom. She’s a pretty positive role model in my life. I've gleaned the positives out of every experience that I’ve had, and it's made me realize how great those experiences can make you feel when you make a conscious effort to put your best foot forward everyday. And maybe from that, you'll cheer up those people who aren’t feeling so happy or in a kind mood.

What are some of your favourite interests or hobbies?

Well, I’m studying vocals, so that’s obviously a really big one. I still love science, drama and math and the like, pretty much anything and everything that has to do with learning or reading. I’m terrible at English, so don’t ask me to write an essay! Other than that I’m pretty open to anything. I love trying new things even though I’m not always great at them, like skating... Oh my goodness. Both of my sisters played rep hockey and I can’t even stand on skates!

(I took Alex skating on the weekend… it was his first time and needless to say, there were some wipeouts).

What made you choose music over science? I know you were going back and forth between the two when you were applying to universities.

Probably the last thing I said to myself was that I have good health, I’m fresh out of high school and I’m young, so why not take the chance. Going back to the hockey thing, I’ve never done anything my sisters have done in any regard, so I’m just kind of making my own path and feeling myself out. Another thing is that my parents were very open to me choosing my program, and backed my decision no matter what it was, so that also made me feel very good. Also, I think that actually coming down and experiencing the U of T campusespecially the Faculty of Musicwas another big deciding factor, the community feel and the Faculty are very, very welcoming.

What would you say is your favourite musical you’ve performed in, not your favourite role, but as a whole.

I think I’d have to go with Urinetown which is what we did for our Grade 12 musical. It’s funny because at first I was like, it’s about people peeing there’s no way that I’m gonna have any connection to this thing at all, and turns out it was a great bonding experience for everyone that was in it. I LOVED the role I played. I’m nice in real life but I love being mean in theatre; that’s so much fun. I love doing that. It was such a great overall experience. I’ve done musicals all my life, but this was a great experience in terms of directing, and it gave me the opportunity to be a student leader and try out some new things that way.

So would you say Urinetown is your favourite role that you’ve played or is there another one that was more fun?

Well, playing Edna Turnblad in Hairspray was a very interesting role. I had no problem embracing the big beautiful lady I needed to be in order to do the role and that probably is the most memorable one.

What’s next for Alex Bowie? Do you have any significant goals for the New Year? Or just in general?

My short term goal was to stop complaining so much, even casually and taking out the negativity when you don’t need it. In terms of where I’m gonna end up, I really have no idea right now. I’m loving the program that I’m in, but I’m still exploring all the options it has to offer and the potentials of doing my Masters or performing after university. Really, I have three more yearsthree and a half years leftso I’m just enjoying life and going where it wants to take me.

Thank you, Alex for doing this interview. I think everybody can agree that you're a role model and a reminder to everybody to keep being positive!