Celebrating high school musical theater

May 20 was an exceptional evening at the Fox Cities P.A.C. celebrating the successes of 14 local high school musical theater programs!

The very first Center Stage High School Musical Theater Awards Showcase welcomed students from participating high schools to perform on stage at the Center in a celebration of the amazing local talent found at high schools throughout Northeast Wisconsin.

It was a truly special evening, where students in their finest attire had their photo taken on the red carpet and socialized in the lobby before taking their seats. The show opened with the number “You Can’t Stop the Beat” from Hairspray, choreographed by professional artist David F.M. Vaughn and musically directed by Shawn Postell, both of whom also directed the closing number “Freak Flag” from Shrek.

In between those two stunning displays of collaboration between representatives from the participating high school theater programs were performances by outstanding individual lead performers and group numbers from nominated high schools. Students were recognized for Backstage Spirit, Outstanding Achievement and Community Engagement as well as performance awards for supporting characters and outstanding ensembles.

At the end of the evening, Liz Valentin of Green Bay West High School and Felix Torrez of Green Bay Southwest High School were announced to represent the program at the Jimmy Awards in New York City this June at Broadway’s Minskoff Theatre.

Check out highlights from the evening in the video below:

The Center Stage High School Musical Theater Awards program is an educational initiative of the Fox Cities P.A.C. with additional support from corporate partners Fox Communities Credit Union and The Post-Crescent.
Additional partners in this program include workshop and rehearsal partner Schneider Foundation, social media partner Nicolet National Bank, Community Engagement Award partner Wipfli, LLP, and sound, lighting and production partner Lighthouse Productions.
This program is also funded in part by a grant from the Jewelers Mutual Charitable Giving Fund within the Community Foundation for the Fox Valley Region and by a Community Impact Grant from 91.1 The Avenue.
The Jimmy® Awards/The National High School Musical Theatre Awards™ (NHSMTA) impacts more than 50,000 students who participate in high school musical theatre competitions sponsored by presenters of Touring Broadway productions throughout the United States. A Best Actress and Best Actor winner from each of these competitions is sent to New York for a week-long theatre intensive of coaching and rehearsals with industry professionals in preparation for a one-night-only showcase on Broadway, where a panel of judges crowns the nation’s top performers. Named for Broadway impresario James M. Nederlander, the program has been the catalyst for more than $1,000,000 in educational scholarships. Presented by The Broadway League Foundation, the ninth annual Jimmy® Awards will take place on Monday, June 26, 2017 at the Minskoff Theatre on Broadway. Coaching and rehearsals for this one-of-a-kind event will be held Monday, June 19, 2017 through Monday, June 26, 2017 in New York City. For more information, please visit
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