Las Casas Performing Arts Scholarship Competition Announces 2014 Finalists

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Las Casas Performing Arts Scholarship Competition Announces 2014 Finalists

Las Casas Foundation is proud to announce 25 finalists have earned a place in this year's Las Casas Performing Arts Scholarship Competition. This year's finalists will compete for $100,000 in scholarship money, in honor of 100 years of entertainment at the Charline McCombs Empire Theatre, and with this year's addition of the Jimmy Award, the opportunity to attend the National High School Musical Theatre Awards (NHSMTA) in New York City.

More than 100 students from 44 different schools entered this year's competition, representing schools in San Antonio, Boerne, Seguin, Fair Oaks Ranch, Converse, Helotes, Fisher, La Vernia, Austin, San Marcos, Schertz, Victoria, Corpus Christi, Castroville and New Braunfels, as well as teens who are home-schooled. Preliminary auditions were held this past weekend, narrowing the field to 25. This year's finalists include:

Madelene Hall: Dance - Lee High School, San Antonio

Kaitlen Jung: Dance - Taft High School, San Antonio

Andrea Lopez: Dance - Johnson High School, San Antonio

Ashley Olson: Dance - North East School of the Arts, San Antonio

Ashton Schifani: Dance - North East School of the Arts, San Antonio

Jorge Espinoza: Duet Acting - Lanier High School, San Antonio

Marlowe Romero: Duet Acting - Lee High School, San Antonio

Hailey Medrano: Duet Acting - Churchill High School, San Antonio

Jonathon Stone: Duet Acting - Churchill High School, San Antonio

Christian Parrish: Duet Acting - MacArthur High School, San Antonio

Samuel Wittlinger: Duet Acting - MacArthur High School, San Antonio

Anna Connelly: Monologue Acting - North East School of the Arts, San Antonio

Daniel Quintero: Monologue Acting - Keystone High School, San Antonio

Joshua Riding: Monologue Acting - Johnson High School, San Antonio

Sydney Watt: Monologue - Acting Saint Mary's Hall, New Braunfels

Renelle Wilson: Monologue Acting - Wagner High School, San Antonio

Konnor Callender: Vocal - San Marcos High School, San Marcos

Madelin Chancey: Vocal - North East School of the Arts, San Antonio

Cameron Kauffman: Vocal - Alamo Heights High School, San Antonio

Aaron Taylor: Vocal - North East School of the Arts, San Antonio

Michele Yamin: Vocal - Reagan High School, San Antonio

Aria Braswell: Jimmy Award - North East School of the Arts, San Antonio

Christopher Heron: Jimmy Award - Lee High School of Art, San Antonio

Aaron Taylor: Jimmy Award - North East School of the Arts, San Antonio

Michele Yamin: Jimmy Award - Reagan High School, San Antonio

The public is invited to see these high school seniors take the stage as they entertain their way to $100,000 in scholarship funds and two NHSMTA trips to New York City during the sixth annual Las Casas Performing Arts Scholarship Competition at the Charline McCombs Empire Theatre, 226 N. St. Mary's Street, on May 18 at 6:00 p.m. Hosted by Las Casas Foundation, the competition will showcase the talents of hopeful high school students while celebrating the Charline McCombs Empire Theatre's 100th anniversary.

Since the program's inception, four categories have been featured in the competition and are judged independently-Vocal Solo, Acting Solo, Acting Duet and Dance Solo. Adding to the centennial excitement of this year's competition, a fifth category, "The Jimmy", has been added to the 2014 competition. Students may only compete in one category within the initial four, but may also compete in The Jimmy category, where two winners will be selected to travel to New York City and attend NHSMTA. With this year's centennial celebration and The Jimmy category, one talented senior might act, sing or dance away with $15,000 to help pursue their college dreams and possibly one of the NHSMTA trips.

The finalists will perform before a panel of professionals representing a variety of performing arts disciplines. The 2014 Las Casas Performing Arts Scholarship Competition judges panel includes: Tony-nominated actress, singer and dancer Jonelle Allen; Broadway, film and television actress Alix Korey and dancer, choreographer, and director Robin Lewis; Broadway, film and television actor Sal Mistretta; and Broadway actress and original cast member of "Rent" Gwen Stewart.

Make sure you're there to cheer these talented performers as they 'break a leg' and earn scholarship funds to help them pursue their dreams. Tickets for the competition are available for $10 per person and can be purchased at the Majestic Theatre Box Office, by calling Ticketmaster at 800-745-3000, or at the door of the Charline McCombs Empire Theatre the evening of the performance. Ticket sales benefit the competition's scholarship fund.

Thanks to its efforts to recognize and assist students in the performing arts, the Las Casas Performing Arts Scholarship Competition received the 2013 National Arts Star Award from the American Foundation For Arts Education. Since its inception, the Las Casas Performing Arts Scholarship Competition has awarded $385,000 in scholarship money. For more information on Las Casas Foundation and the scholarship competition, visit www.lascasasfoundation.org.

Funded through Foundation memberships, the generous support of donors, corporations and grants, Las Casas Foundation is dedicated to the development of the performing arts through education and scholarships, as well as the restoration and preservation of historic theatres. The Foundation hosts the annual Las Casas Performing Arts Scholarship Competition and offers a variety of educational initiatives and efforts to nurture and grow the performing arts. Recipient of the 2013 National Arts Star Award from the American Foundation For Arts Education in recognition of Las Casas Foundation's significant impact on arts education, the Foundation has awarded $385,000 in scholarship funds to deserving students in the field of performing arts since 2009 and plans to award another $100,000 in 2014. For more information, visit www.lascasasfoundation.org.

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