“It was a very inspiring experience to teach Kristen. She always came into class with a positive attitude, with a bubbly personality that was just endless. She was fearless in front of a crowd, but also humble. She was an exceptional talent at voice and at drama. I’m very proud of her. Extremely proud of her.”
—Gary Forbis, Country Day choir director and Honorary Alumni Association member
You may not know Kristen, but you most definitely know her work.
She, along with her husband, Robert Lopez, are the highly talented duo who wrote the eight original songs for Disney’s Frozen, including “Let It Go,” for which they won the 2013 Academy Award for “Best Original Song,” along with two Grammys. Most recently, they wrote the musical centerpiece of the 2017 movie Coco, “Remember Me,” which won the 2018 Academy Award for “Best Original Song.”
On February 28, Kristen was named Alumna of the Year at the 37th annual Honorary Alumni Association Dinner. She accepted her award via video as she and her husband were understandably unable to travel to Charlotte. They were within days of opening night for their current creative endeavor, the stage musical adaptation of Frozen.
Prior to the phenomenal success of Frozen, Kristen and Robert had written music for numerous television shows, films, and musicals, including for the Disney film Winnie-the-Pooh. Kristen also provided the voice of Kanga in the film. Kristen joined Country Day after her family moved to Charlotte when she was 14. She played Mary Magdalene in the Upper School production of Jesus Christ Superstar and performed in various shows with the Children’s Theater of Charlotte. She went on to Williams College, where she double-majored in drama and psychology. While attending the BMI Lehman Engel Musical Theatre Workshop in New York, she found her true calling as a lyricist and met her husband and collaborator. The Lopezes live and work in Brooklyn, and have two daughters, ages eight and 13.