2014 Illinois High School Musical Theater Awards to be Held 4/25 at Broadway Playhouse

2014 Illinois High School Musical Theater Awards to be Held 4/25 at Broadway Playhouse

Broadway In Chicago has announced the third annual Illinois High School Musical Theater Awards held at the Broadway Playhouse at Water Tower Place (175 East Chestnut Place) on Friday, April 25, 2014. Schools and students from the state of Illinois are invited to submit and 24 finalists (12 actors & 12 actresses) will be invited to participate in the program. Sponsored by Grosh Backdrops & Drapery, the newly-established Illinois chapter of the National High School Musical Theater Awards serves as an annual national celebration of outstanding achievement in musical theater performance by high school students.

The finalists will receive tickets to see NEWSIES in Chicago (playing the Oriental Theatre Dec. 10, 2014 - Jan. 4 2015) and will do a workshop with the production's Associate Choreographer. Finalists will perform for a panel of casting agents and theater professionals on stage at the Broadway Playhouse on April 25, 2014. The top two Illinois performers (one actor and one actress) will be invited to attend the National High School Musical Theater Awards with an all-expense paid trip to New York City.

To Be Considered: Student performers must play the leading male or female role in the full-length school musical (presented during the 2013-2014 academic year). Note: Nominee must have played the lead role in a full-length high school musical theater production. A supporting role does not qualify. A comprehensive list of eligible roles can be found at www.nhsmta.com.

New this year is the Grosh Scenic Design Award, where a participating school will be acknowledged for achievement in outstanding scenic design.

For more information on both awards, complete rules and regulations, or to download an application, visit www.BroadwayInChicago.com/IHSMTA. For more information on The National High School Musical Theater Awards, also known as The Jimmy Awards, visit NHSMTA.org.

Applications for the 2014 Illinois High School Musical Theater Awards are now available.

Important Dates
Applications Due Monday, April 7 at 5:00pm
Applicants Notified by Friday, April 11, 2014
IHSMTA Program Friday, April 25, 2014
NHSMTA Program June 25 - July 1, 2014
NHSMTA Performance Monday, June 30, 2014

The National High School Musical Theater Awards (NHSMTA) was established in 2009 to elevate the importance of theater arts education in schools and reward excellence in student performance. The program impacts more than 50,000 students annually who participate in high school musical theater competitions sponsored by top professional theaters throughout the United States. Each year, winners of these competitions are flown to New York City to compete at Nationals.

The sixth annual National High School Musical Theater Awards will take place on Monday, June 30, 2014 when students will give it their all at The Jimmy Awards showcase at the Minskoff Theatre on Broadway. During this one-of-a-kind event, a panel of judges will choose two students for the coveted awards of Best Performance by an Actor and Best Performance by an Actress.

Rehearsals for the National High School Musical Theater Awards will take place Wednesday, June 25, through Tuesday, July 1, 2014. The week's rigorous schedule will include group rehearsals and individual vocal and acting coaching by Broadway industry professionals, visits from special guests and discussions with working actors, a night out in Times Square for dinner and a Broadway show, and on the final day of the program, a session with casting agency Telsey & Co.

Since its inception, NHSMTA has been the catalyst for more $1,000,000 in educational scholarships awarded to deserving young performers. Also known as The Jimmy Awards, named for Broadway impresario James M. Nederlander, this year-round program is administered by the Broadway Education Alliance (BEA), a New York based non-profit corporation dedicated to supporting initiatives that inspire creativity, build confidence and stimulate critical thinking in America's youth. NHSMTA is BEA's first national initiative.

Thanks to the support of its participating professional regional theaters and donors, NHSMTA continues to grow. In 2012, the program inspired preeminent broadcaster WGBH Boston to produce a 3-part documentary series called "Broadway or Bust," which followed students on a journey from their hometown competitions to their debut on Broadway at the Minskoff Theatre. The series premiered in September 2012 and was showcased in 100% of PBS's Top 50 strategic markets, ranking as one of their most highly rated programs. It remains popular viewing at www.pbs.org.

The depth, scope and education-centric mission of NHSMTA coupled with its extensive television and media exposure has made participating in the program an aspiration for a growing number of high schools. Based on feedback from participating theaters, school administrators are now directing both human and financial resources to improve the quality of theater arts education in their districts. This renewed enthusiasm for the performing arts in schools is already helping to invigorate local theaters and the communities they serve. For more information, please visit www.nhsmta.com.

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