#WorkHard #PlayHard – Celebrating the Life of Chris Smith

A Memorial for the late Chris Smith will be held on Saturday 12th January, 7PM at the Little Carib Theatre. Smith died of leukemia on Saturday 5th January at the age of 44.

Smith was a theatre and film actor who was ” front and center among the promised generation of theatre and film in this country.” according to actor – Michael Cherrie. Smith made his stage debut in Raymond Choo Kong Production’s “Why am I Married” and shot to international fame as a film actor with Bazodee (2015). Chris has since appeared in numerous commercials, and film and theatre roles.

While his recent stage credits included MCS Production’s West Side Story (2018), Narad Mahabir’s The Ford at the New Play Festival 2018, and LP Entertainment Theatre’s DIANA Christ is perhaps best remembered for his formidable performance as Pontius Pilate in JCS Entertainment’s 2014 production Jesus Christ Superstar, a role he described as his life long dream, and a role which he would reprise in 2016.

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Chris Smith was also a production manager, sound designer, and exceptional graphic designer who has done such work with Raymond Choo Kong Productions, JCS Entertainment, Abeo Jackson Productions, First Instinct Productions, Ha Ha Ha Productions and Funny Farm Productions, and recently formed his own production company ‘The ENT Factor’.

Energetic and bold, “Chris Smith was one of our bright stars whose passion for his craft was exhibited through his work. He took every role with the same zeal and enthusiasm”  according to NDATT Vice President – Marvin Ishmael. His personal motto was “Work Hard, Play Hard” and saw every performance as an opportunity to grow as an actor, and as a person in real life.

The Trinidad and Tobago Performing Arts Network offers its condolences to Chris’ Wife – Paula Hamilton-Smith, his Father and JCS Entertainment Producer – John Henry Smith and the bereaved family and friends.

A Memorial for the late Chris Smith will be held on Saturday 12th January, 7PM at the Little Carib Theatre. His funeral will be held on Tuesday 15th January 2019, 2PM at St. Mary’s Anglican Church, Tacarigua.

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An Outpouring of Love – Chris Smith Remembered Fondly

Upon hearing the news of his passing, the performing arts fraternity was plunged into mourning with many initially expressing disbelief. “Many credited him with introducing them to theatre, encouraging them in their work and teaching and mentoring those he encountered” according to a a release by the National Drama Association of Trinidad and Tobago. “He is remembered as an amazing human being, someone who was caring, generous, professional, punctual and a pleasure to work with.”

In a post on social media, Laura Moses said “Chris Smith was the man that gave me my first break. I still remember the late night call to ask about the audition. he was sweet, welcoming and reassuring, and that is how he always remained.”

Isabella Griffith said “I remember when I found out I would be working alongside actors like Chris Smith for DIANA I was so nervous. Because I mean these people have beeennn in theatre. But he was so humble and a pleasure to work with. He was charming, funny, and a big goof ball that added mischief and fun to rehearsals.”

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Chris Smith in rehearsals for LP Entertainment Theatre’s DIANA | Photo Credit: Kiral Ifill

Levee Smith said, “I remember when I did the King and I, I marveled at you. You were the only actor that didn’t have to sing in the play, you were powerful, so powerful I stopped in my tracks and forgot a line in a scene we had together. You prompted me and said “YOU HAVE A LINE!” It was amazing to see an actor who wasn’t singing make his role so dominant. You were really someone to look up to.”

Dr. L. Efebo Wilkinson said “Chris was a wonderful young man and a dramatist of tremendous promise. The theatre has lost another fine soldier. My condolences to his family and especially his devoted dad, John.”

Producer Lylah Persad said “His motto was “work hard play hard” and he DID. He was a JOY to look at because he worked hard. […] He was just a lovely big child, with a good heart, who you want to be around and have on your team.”

Bazodee co-star Machel Montano also offered his tribute via instagram

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