In 2015, up-and-comer Okieriete "Oak" Onaodowan got a career-changing job. He was cast as not one, but two, major characters in Lin Manuel-Miranda's hit musical, Hamilton – landing himself a Grammy for 'Best Musical Theater Album' along the way.
After breaking out in one of the most popular and acclaimed musicals of all time, Onaodowan's winning streak continues. The 30-year-old just landed a major role in the upcoming Grey's Anatomy firefighters spin-off, making him the newest citizen of Shondaland.
A star on the rise
Born in New Jersey to Nigerian parents, Onaodowan briefly played high school football before an injury forced him to consider other extracurricular activities. This was how he discovered his love (and talent) for performing.
While Onaodowan has had more theatre experience – landing major roles in Rocky the Musical, Cyrano de Bergerac and most recently, The Great Comet – he is clearly also interested in doing a lot more film and TV.
He has had only one feature film role, playing Lou in 2012's Thank You For Sharing. He has also had a few guest appearances on acclaimed TV shows, including the Emmy-winning comedy Girls, The Get Down and Blue Bloods.
His upcoming role in the Grey's Anatomy spin-off will be his first major role outside of the theatre – and if the series turns out to be half as successful as the show that spawned it, then expect Onaodowan to become a household name in no time.