TUTS Reveals 2014 Tommy Tune Award Nominees

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TUTS Reveals 2014 Tommy Tune Award Nominees

John C. Breckenridge, President and CEO of Theatre Under The Stars (TUTS), announced today the nominations and presenters for TUTS' 12th annual Tommy Tune Awards which will be held on Wednesday, April 16, 2014 at 7:30 p.m. at the Hobby Center for the Performing Arts. Developed by TUTS, the Tommy Tune Awards honor musical theatre excellence at the high school level. Co-hosts for the award ceremony include Jim Bernhard and Sarah Pepper. Bernhard has written several original productions that have debuted at TUTS and authored the theatrical history Stars in Your Eyes. Pepper is the morning host of The Hot Show on HOT 95.7 FM.

After reviewing and evaluating the 44 participating Houston-area high school productions during the 2013-2014 school year, a team of 33 Houston-based theatre professionals made 151 nominations in 15 categories. An additional committee considered 51 potential scholarship recipients.

The following high schools and individuals were nominated:

Best Musical:
Cinco Ranch High School, Monty Python's Spamalot
Clear Springs High School, Urinetown
Episcopal High School, Legally Blonde, The Musical
G. W. Carver Magnet High School, In The Heights
High School for the Performing and Visual Arts (HSPVA), Avenue Q, School Edition
Houston Christian High School, Disney's Beauty and the Beast
Klein Oak High School, Guys and Dolls
Pearland High School, Hello Dolly!

Best Leading Actor:
Cinco Ranch High School, Monty Python's Spamalot, Mathew Pagano as King Arthur
Clear Springs High School, Urinetown, Nicholas Carlin as Bobby Strong
G. W. Carver Magnet High School, In The Heights, Nyles Washington as Usnavi
High School for the Performing and Visual Arts (HSPVA), Avenue Q, School Edition, Dillon Glass as Princeton
Klein High School, The Pajama Game, Jonathan Lammey as Sid
Klein Oak High School, Guys and Dolls, Jake Maeker as Nathan Detroit
Klein Oak High School, Guys and Dolls, Alec Michael Ryan as Sky Masterson
Pearland High School, Hello Dolly!, Marcus Lonardo as Horace Vandergelder

Best Leading Actress:
Cinco Ranch High School, Monty Python's Spamalot, Rebecca Russell as Lady of the Lake
Clear Springs High School, Urinetown, Emily Lewis as Hope Cladwell
Cypress Ranch High School, Shrek, The Musical, Rebekah Stanley as Fiona
Episcopal High School, Legally Blonde, The Musical, Blair Baldwin as Paulette
Houston Christian High School, Disney's Beauty and the Beast, Morgan Rucker as Belle
James E. Taylor High School, High School Musical, Nicole Daniels as Gabriella
Klein Oak High School, Guys and Dolls, Brooke Shaw as Miss Adelaide
Klein Oak High School, Guys and Dolls, Sarah Holevinski as Sarah Brown

Best Supporting Actor:
Cinco Ranch High School, Monty Python's Spamalot, Kameron Knott as Guard/Sir Lancelot
Clear Springs High School, Urinetown, Stephen Louis as Officer Lockstock
Clear Springs High School, Urinetown, Brandon Mayville as Caldwell B. Cladwell
Cypress Ranch High School, Shrek, The Musical, Alec Quintero as Lord Farquaad
High School for the Performing and Visual Arts (HSPVA), Avenue Q, School Edition, Dante Rossi as Trekkie
Houston Christian High School, Disney's Beauty and the Beast, Ian Hopper as Gaston
Klein Oak High School, Guys and Dolls, Michael Dubose as Nicely-Nicely Johnson
Memorial High School, Shrek, The Musical, Laurent Chenet as Donkey
Pearland High School, Hello Dolly!, Zack Moller as Cornelius Hackl

Best Supporting Actress:
Cinco Ranch High School, Monty Python's Spamalot, Madison Hill as Patsy
Clear Springs High School, Urinetown, Hana Khan as Little Sally
Clear Springs High School, Urinetown, Libby Hart as Penelope Pennywise
Cypress Woods High School, Into The Woods, Ashlyn Maddox as Little Red Riding Hood
Episcopal High School, Legally Blonde, The Musical, Liz Buzbee as Vivienne
G. W. Carver Magnet High School, In The Heights, Amber Scott as Daniela
Houston Christian High School, Disney's Beauty and the Beast, Katherine Gualy as Mrs. Potts
Morton Ranch High School, Disney's Beauty and the Beast, Kaylie Fullmer as Mrs. Potts
Pearland High School, Hello Dolly!, Kendall Stubblefield as Irene Molloy

Best Featured Performer:
Cinco Ranch High School, Monty Python's Spamalot, Trevor Boyd as Dennis/Sir Galahad
Clear Springs High School, Urinetown, Sterling Bates as Senator Fipp
Clements High School, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Francesa Ghizzoni as Logainne Schwartzandgrunenierre
Cypress Ranch High School, Shrek, The Musical, Kaitlyn Knippers as Dragon
Foster High School, Disney's Beauty and The Beast, Julia Marcucci as Babette
High School for the Performing and Visual Arts (HSPVA), Avenue Q,School Edition, Kyle Legacion and Emily Scott as Boy/Girl Bears
James E. Taylor High School, High School Musical, Hayley Abbott as Jackie Scott
Klein Oak High School, Guys and Dolls, Travis Jackson Pounds as Big Jule
Magnolia West High School, Grease, Amanda Massey as Cha Cha
Memorial High School, Shrek, The Musical, Maddie Calais as Dragon
Morton Ranch High School, Disney's Beauty and the Beast, Michael Follis as Lefou
Pearland High School, Hello Dolly!, Shelby Melinder as Ermengarde

Best Direction:
Cinco Ranch High School, Monty Python's Spamalot
Clear Springs High School, Urinetown
Episcopal High School, Legally Blonde, The Musical
Friendswood High School, 42nd Street
G. W. Carver Magnet High School, In The Heights
High School for the Performing and Visual Arts (HSPVA), Avenue Q, School Edition
Houston Christian High School, Disney's Beauty and the Beast
Klein Oak High School, Guys and Dolls
Lamar Consolidated High School, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee
Stratford High School, West Side Story

Best Choreography:
Cinco Ranch High School, Monty Python's Spamalot
Clear Falls High School, The Wizard of Oz
Cypress Ranch High School, Shrek, The Musical
Friendswood High School, 42nd Street
G. W. Carver Magnet High School, In The Heights
Houston Christian High School, Disney's Beauty and the Beast
Klein Oak High School, Guys and Dolls
Manvel High School, Grease
St. Agnes Academy, Mame
The John Cooper School, Sympathy Jones
The Woodlands High School, Thoroughly Modern Millie

Best Musical Direction:
Cinco Ranch High School, Monty Python's Spamalot
Clear Springs High School, Urinetown
Cypress Ranch High School, Shrek, The Musical
Friendswood High School, 42nd Street
G. W. Carver Magnet High School, In The Heights
Klein Collins High School, The Drowsy Chaperone
Klein Oak High School, Guys and Dolls
Pearland High School, Hello Dolly!
Stratford High School, West Side Story
The John Cooper School, Sympathy Jones
The Woodlands High School, Thoroughly Modern Millie

Best Orchestra:
Cinco Ranch High School, Monty Python's Spamalot
Friendswood High School, 42nd Street
G. W. Carver Magnet High School, In The Heights
George Ranch High School, The Wizard of Oz
J. Frank Dobie High School, Into The Woods
Klein Collins High School, The Drowsy Chaperone
Klein Oak High School, Guys and Dolls
Memorial High School, Shrek, The Musical
Pasadena Memorial High School, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat
Porter High School, Seussical
The Woodlands High School, Thoroughly Modern Millie

Best Scenic Design:
Clear Springs High School, Urinetown
Clements High School, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee
Friendswood High School, 42nd Street
G. W. Carver Magnet High School, In The Heights
High School for the Performing and Visual Arts (HSPVA), Avenue Q, School Edition
Kingwood High School, Shrek, The Musical
Klein Oak High School, Guys and Dolls
Magnolia West High School, Grease
Porter High School, Seussical
Stratford High School, West Side Story
The John Cooper School, Sympathy Jones
The Woodlands High School, Thoroughly Modern Millie

Best Costume Design:
Clear Springs High School, Urinetown
High School for the Performing and Visual Arts (HSPVA), Avenue Q, School Edition
Houston Christian High School, Disney's Beauty and the Beast
Kingwood High School, Shrek, The Musical
Klein High School, The Pajama Game
Klein Oak High School, Guys and Dolls
Morton Ranch High School, Disney's Beauty and the Beast
Pasadena Memorial High School, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat
Second Baptist School, Singing In The Rain
Stratford High School, West Side Story
The John Cooper School, Sympathy Jones
The Woodlands High School, Thoroughly Modern Millie

Best Lighting Design:
Cinco Ranch High School, Monty Python's Spamalot
Clear Springs High School, Urinetown
Clements High School, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee
High School for the Performing and Visual Arts (HSPVA), Avenue Q, School Edition
Houston Christian High School, Disney's Beauty and the Beast
Kingwood High School, Shrek, The Musical
Klein Oak High School, Guys and Dolls
Pasadena Memorial High School, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat
Porter High School, Seussical
Stratford High School, West Side Story

Best Crew & Technical Execution:
Cinco Ranch High School, Monty Python's Spamalot
Clear Springs High School, Urinetown
Clements High School, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee
Episcopal High School, Legally Blonde, The Musical
Houston Christian High School, Disney's Beauty and the Beast
Kingwood High School, Shrek, The Musical
Klein High School, The Pajama Game
Klein Oak High School, Guys and Dolls
Pearland High School, Hello Dolly!
Stratford High School, West Side Story

Best Ensemble/Chorus:
Cinco Ranch High School, Monty Python's Spamalot
Clear Springs High School, Urinetown
Cypress Ranch High School, Shrek, The Musical
Friendswood High School, 42nd Street
G. W. Carver Magnet High School, In The Heights
Klein Oak High School, Guys and Dolls
Pasadena Memorial High School, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat
Pearland High School, Hello Dolly!
Stratford High School, West Side Story
The John Cooper School, Sympathy Jones

This year's special presenter is Beth Broderick, an actress most widely known for her work in "Sabrina, the Teenage Witch". Guests will also enjoy a special video appearance from Alison Luff, who played Elphaba in the 2013 national tour of Wicked. Other presenters will include Miller Outdoor Theatre's Managing Director Cissy Segall Davis, KHOU's Deborah Duncan, KUHT's Ernie Manouse, composer and musician Michael Moricz, ABC 13's Don Nelson and TUTS Scholarship Committee Chairperson Amy Pierce.

TUTS' Tommy Tune Awards are designed not only to acknowledge remarkable musical theatre talent at the high school level, but also to encourage future development. TUTS will present eight scholarships to outstanding participating students of the Tommy Tune Awards. This includes the Ruth Denney Scholarship, named in honor of Tune's mentor and legendary Lamar High School drama teacher. Ruth Denney was the founder and first director of the High School for the Performing and Visual Arts in Houston, and then Professor of Drama Education at the University of Texas at Austin. She died in 2007, just a few days before her 93rd birthday. Students under consideration were required to meet specific criteria set out by the Scholarship Committee, as well as submit an application and essay. The scholarship committee, composed of TUTS board members and community leaders, has carefully reviewed all of the applications and will announce scholarship recipients during the awards ceremony.

In addition to the Tony-awards-style ceremony, the evening will feature performances from nominees in the Best Musical category, a musical medley with this year's Best Leading Actor and Best Leading Actress nominees, and a grand finale including two students from each participating school.

The Best Leading Actor and Actress will go on to compete at the national level for the Jimmy Award at the National High School Musical Theater Awards in New York City. Established in 2009, the Jimmy Awards are named after Broadway theatre owner and producer, James M. Nederlander. This year, the program will bring the country's best high school performers together to compete on Broadway on Monday, June 30, 2014.

Theatre Under The Stars will cover all expenses for this year's Best Actor and Best Actress during this week-long national event. While in New York, Jimmy Award participants will have the opportunity to participate in rehearsals and master classes, receive one-on-one coaching from theater professionals, be seen by casting agents, meet and converse with Broadway actors and compete for scholarships and other prizes. The week's events will culminate in a live awards show where the Jimmy Award for Best Performance by an Actor and Best Performance by an Actress will be presented.

TUTS' Tommy Tune Awards are named for Houston native and Lamar High School alumnus, Tommy Tune. A performer, director, and choreographer with more than 50 years of stage experience, Tune received nine Tony Awards for his work in the following productions: Seesaw, My One and Only, A Day in Hollywood/A Night in the Ukraine, Nine, Grand Hotel, and The Will Rogers Follies. He was also awarded the National Medal of Arts in 2003 by President Bush.

The Tommy Tune Awards ceremony is open to the general public, and tickets will be available for purchase beginning on April 2. For information on tickets to the 2014 Tommy Tune Awards ceremony, call (713) 558-8887 or visit www.TUTS.com/TommyTune.

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