2018-19 Center Stage Awards recipients announced

April 26, 2019
The Fox Cities Performing Arts Center is proud to announce the recipients of the 2018-19 Center Stage High School Musical Theater Awards.

Throughout the 2018-19 school year, 17 local high schools have participated in the Center Stage High School Musical Theater Awards program, an education initiative that celebrates and supports the achievements of high school theater programs in Northeastern Wisconsin.

During the program year, participating students had the opportunity to attend seven workshops with professional artists at the Fox Cities Performing Arts Centerand had the opportunity to ask questions and explore different aspects of theater, giving them a deeper understanding of live performing arts.

A team of trained adjudicators attended the participating school’s musical production and provided educational feedback. Scores for each production were tabulated and the top qualifiers will be recognized with an award in their category at the CenterStage High School Musical Theater Awards Showcase on May 18.

This year’s participating high schools include: Ashwaubenon, Brillion, Denmark, Fond du Lac, Fox Valley Lutheran, Green Bay East, Green Bay Preble, Green Bay Southwest, Green Bay West, Hortonville, Kaukauna, Little Chute, Luxemburg-Casco, Mishicot, Neenah, St. Mary Catholic and Winnebago Lutheran Academy.

The community is welcome to celebrate the successes of local high school musical theater programs and see the local stars of tomorrow at the Center Stage High School Musical Theater Awards Showcase on Saturday, May 18 at 7:30 p.m.

Tickets for this performance are $15 for adults and $10 for students and go on sale Friday, May 3 at 10 a.m. Tickets can be purchased at the Fox Cities P.A.C. ticket office in person or by phone (920) 730-3760 or through Ticketmaster online or by phone at (800) 982-2787. Additional fees may apply.

The 2018-19 Center Stage High School Musical Theater Award recipients are:

Outstanding Overall Production
Green Bay East High School’s Billy Elliot
Green Bay Preble High School’s Newsies
Green Bay Southwest High School’s Footloose
Neenah High School’s Chicago (High School Edition)

Outstanding Ensemble
Denmark High School’s Disney’s Beauty and the Beast
Green Bay East High School’s Billy Elliot
Green Bay Preble High School’s Newsies 
Green Bay Southwest High School’s Footloose
Neenah High School’s Chicago (High School Edition)

Outstanding Performance by a Lead Actor
Kani Johnson
as Horton the Elephant in Little Chute High School’s Seussical the Musical
Simon Mueller
as Jacob Marley in Fond du Lac High School’s A Christmas Carol
Michael Murphy
as Billy Flynn in Neenah High School’s Chicago (High School Edition)
Christian Schommer
as Jack Kelly in Green Bay Preble High School’s Newsies 
Matthew Wautier
as Ren McCormack in Green Bay Southwest High School’s Footloose

Outstanding Performance by a Lead Actress
Sydney Egger
as Katherine Plumber in Green Bay Preble High School’s Newsies
Kyra Hietpas
as Gertrude McFuzz in Little Chute High School’s Seussical the Musical
Marki Hietpas
as The Cat in the Hat in Little Chute High School’s Seussical the Musical
Reese Keyser
as Vi Moore in Green Bay Southwest High School’s Footloose
Lily Slivinski
as Velma Kelly in Neenah High School’s Chicago (High School Edition)

Outstanding Performance by a Supporting Actor
Joey Gutzmann
as Mr. Fezziwig in Fond du Lac High School’s A Christmas Carol
Jarren Holloway
as Jackie Elliot in Green Bay East High School’s Billy Elliot
Aaron Huntley
as Davey in Green Bay Preble High School’s Newsies
Colin Krueger
as Bela Zangler in Fox Valley Lutheran High School’s Crazy For You
Sean Nelson
as Chuck Cranston in Green Bay Southwest High School’s Footloose

Outstanding Performance by a Supporting Actress
Elizabeth Cantwell
as Wendy Jo in Green Bay Southwest High School’s Footloose
Katelyn Flanagan
as Sister Mary Lazarus in St. Mary Catholic High School’s Sister Act
Elizabeth Geoffrey
as Rosie in Kaukauna High School’s Mamma Mia!
Marissa Krueger
as Ghost of Christmas Present in Fond du Lac High School’s A Christmas Carol
Olivia VandenPlas
as Nicky in Green Bay West High School’s Avenue Q School Edition

Rising Star
Recognizes an underclassman in a feature role who is not eligible for a lead or supporting role nomination.
Robin VandenLangenberg

as Race in Green Bay Preble High School’s Newsies
Lucas Weigand
as Chef Louis in Winnebago Lutheran Academy’s Disney’s The Little Mermaid

Community Engagement Award
Celebrating one outstanding school who connected their production back to their community.

Mishicot High School
with their production of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast
Outstanding Achievement Award
Celebrating a student who has triumphed over and defied challenges. 
Kimberly Haima
from Little Chute High School

Backstage Spirit Award
Recognizing the individual or crew who tirelessly contributed to the creation of seamless storytelling on stage. 
Trinity Oliver
from Green Bay Southwest High School

At the showcase, one outstanding lead actress and one outstanding lead actor will be announced as Best Actress and Best Actor. Chosen through a separate audition process, these two performers will represent the Center Stage High School Musical Theater Awards program at The National High School Musical Theatre Awards®, also called The Jimmys®, in New York City on June 24. Participants in that program will audition for scholarships, learn from professionals in a week of workshops and perform on stage at the Minskoff Theatre (currently the Broadway home to Disney’s The Lion King).


The Center Stage High School Musical Theater Awards program is an educational initiative of the Fox Cities P.A.C. with support from corporate partner Fox Communities Credit Union.
Additional partners in this program include Nicolet National Bank, Angelo and Jennifer Ninivaggi, Schneider Foundation, WE Energies Foundation and Wipfli.

Grant support for the Center Stage High School Musical Theater Awards program is provided by Octoberfest, an event of the Fox Cities Chamber and by Jewelers Mutual Charitable Giving Fund within the Community Foundation for the Fox Valley Region.

Center programming is supported in part by a grant from the Wisconsin Arts Board with funds from the State of Wisconsin and National Endowment for the Arts.

Programs like the Center Stage High School Musical Theater Awards are also supported in part by contributions to the Center’s Annual Partner Campaign.

The Jimmy Awards®/The National High School Musical Theatre Awards® (NHSMTA®) program impacts more than 100,000 students who participate in high school musical theatre competitions sponsored by presenters of Touring Broadway productions throughout the United States. Presented by the Broadway League Foundation, the program sends a Best Actress and Best Actor winner from each of these competitions to New York for a week-long theatre intensive of coaching and rehearsals with industry professionals in preparation for a one-night-only talent showcase on Broadway. Named for Broadway impresario James M. Nederlander, the program has been the catalyst for more than $2,000,000 in educational scholarships. The tenth annual Jimmy Awards® will take place on Monday, June 24, 2019 at the Minskoff Theatre on Broadway. Coaching and rehearsals for this one-of-a-kind event will be held Monday, June 17, 2019 through Monday, June 24, 2019 in New York City. For more information, please visit www.JimmyAwards.com.