Skip to main contentSkip to footer

Chicago Fire's Taylor Kinney's surprising road to acting

The One Chicago star discovered his passion later in life

taylor kinney road to acting
Ahad Sanwari
Ahad Sanwari - New York
Senior WriterNew York
Share this:

Taylor Kinney has become a household name thanks to his stint as Lieutenant Kelly Severide on the NBC drama Chicago Fire.

However, before his career-making role came knocking, his journey to the world of acting was slow and steady.

VIDEO: Taylor Kinney looked so different at the start of his career

The Pennsylvania-born star, in fact, wasn't even destined to become an actor till much later in life, having developed the passion for it at an older age.

He was raised by a single mother, a dental hygienist, alongside his three siblings, and attended West Virginia University, where he studied Business Management.

MORE: Chicago Fire fans seriously divided over new episode teaser amid Taylor Kinney's exit

TRENDING NOW: Amy Robach and T.J. Holmes' net worths are worlds apart from one another

Unlike many of his contemporaries, Taylor's interest in the art didn't come about till later in life, after having already decided to go down a more traditional route.

However, it was his decision to take a theater elective during his sophomore year in university that shaped the rest of his life, telling USA Today that it "held my interest outside of the classroom more so than any other subject I'd ever taken."

taylor kinney on the red carpet© Photo: Getty Images

Taylor only developed an interest in acting during his sophomore year of college

Taylor left college after his junior year to move to Hawaii, where he wanted a "life experience of my own," learning to surf, skydive, and frame houses.

Only after a year in Hawaii did he decide to take acting more seriously and move to Los Angeles to begin auditioning, landing his first major role in 2006 in the soap opera Fashion House.

MORE: Taylor Kinney rocks bright red lipstick in first pictures after Chicago Fire departure

ALSO POPULAR: All we know about Hoda Kotb's Today Show replacement, Tom Llamas

After a series of other starring roles in shows like Trauma and The Vampire Diaries, he starred in Lady Gaga's 2011 music video for You and I, sparking a relationship with the singer which resulted in a 2015 engagement which was called off the following year.

taylor kinney during season one of chicago fire© Photo: Getty Images

He first appeared on Chicago Fire in 2012

Soon after in 2012, Taylor landed the role of Kelly Severide in the first of the One Chicago franchise's installments, Chicago Fire, having appeared in every season since.

Read more HELLO! US stories here

Like this story? Sign up to our newsletter to get other stories like this delivered straight to your inbox.