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Catching Up with the Jimmy Awards Alumni- Part 3

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The Jimmy Awards return as a virtual ceremony on Thursday, July 15, 2021.

Catching Up with the Jimmy Awards Alumni- Part 3

It's just under one month until the biggest night in high school musical theatre! The Jimmy Awards officially return as a virtual ceremony on Thursday, July 15, 2021. View the full list of nominees!

As presented by the Broadway League Foundation, the program has, in past years, invited two nominees from each of these regional ceremonies to New York City to participate in a theatre intensive including coaching and rehearsals with Broadway professionals in preparation for a one-night-only talent showcase on a Broadway stage.

Before we get to know this year's nominees, BroadwayWorld is catching up with some of the program's alumni! Below, get to know just a few, including: English Bernhardt, Carolina I. Campos, Noah Diggs, Jeremy Fuentes, Maggie Gidden, Mia Cherise Hall, Morgan Kirner, Halle Mastroberardino, Katie McKernan, Jake Pedersen, Connor Riordan, and Hannah Sulak.

Be sure to check back later to hear from even more Jimmy Awards alumni!

View Part 1 and Part 2!


Catching Up with the Jimmy Awards Alumni- Part 3 English Bernhardt

School: Ravenscroft School

City, State: Raleigh, NC

Jimmys Year: 2014

Favorite Memory: Soundcheck on the Minskoff stage! It was absolutely magical.

Been Up To: After the Jimmy Awards, I worked on the Pasek/Paul/Levinson Project - later known as Dear Evan Hansen in both the workshop and lab. I then packed my bags and went on the road with the 1st National Tour of If/Then starring Idina Menzel, and was currently the standby for Cady, Regina and Janis on the Mean Girls 1st National Tour when the world shut down!

Tell This Year's Class: Don't get discouraged by the current state of the world or theatre industry. The arts are what will get us through this time and bring people hope and light again. The world needs to see your talent now more than ever!

Where can we see new clips?: YouTube! And lots of bootlegs on TikTok...


Catching Up with the Jimmy Awards Alumni- Part 3 Carolina I. Campos

School: Reagan High School

City, State: San Antonio, TX

Jimmys Year: 2018

Favorite Memory: My favorite memory from that year was getting to talk to Pasek and Paul, as well as talk to the cast of Dear Evan Hansen after the show. Seeing these artists advocate and support our generation of theatremakers, having them see our dreams and actually believe in us, is a memory that I think sums up that week. I remember asking Taylor Trench a question-- something along the lines of who he does this show for and he gave a response that I will never forget: he said "for myself". And thats what theatre is about I think. I think this is a healing process for you. And sure, it can be healing for the audience too, (as his performance was for me), but it can't be fueled by anyone but yourself. You have to love it. It has to be your food. It was really cool, and something that I try to remind myself everyday.

Been Up To: I'm studying at Carnegie Mellon University for Musical Theatre. I owe a lot to the Jimmy's for that one. But besides that, I'm also studying classic literature, and mexican history. In the past two years at school I've found a lot of beauty in my mexican culture-- and thats helped me be an advocate for Latinx theatre. I'm doing a musical in pittbsurgh this summer with an all latinx cast, based off of the adaptation of "The Revolution of Evelyn Serrano" by Sonia Manzano, so that will be very special.

Tell This Year's Class: Have fun and savor every bite!

Where can we see new clips?: My portrayal of Evelyn in "The Revolution of Evelyn Serrano" will be streamed publicly in June ! (: Insta: Bellaacamposs


Noah Diggs

School: Gibbs Senior High School

City, State: Saint Petersburg, Florida

Jimmys Year: 2018

Favorite Memory: Training with Natalie Weiss!

Been Up To: Finishing School but popping up in a film here and there!

Tell This Year's Class: Do your best but more importantly cherish the moment and have fun! Its not everyday you meet this amount of beautiful people!

Where can we see new clips?: By the time this goes up I will have a few films on Netflix, Amazon, Hulu, etc. I will also be way more active on social media!


Catching Up with the Jimmy Awards Alumni- Part 3 Jeremy Fuentes

School: Archbishop Stepinac High School

City, State: New York

Jimmys Year: 2019

Favorite Memory: My favorite memory would have to be going into Times Square and seeing all of our faces on the billboard. It was a surprise that completely blindsided us but it was such a joy to witness. Seeing all my peers around me in awe made a rush of emotions overcome me. I'll never forget that day. Ever.

Been Up To: I've been so good! I am now attending the CAP 21 program at Molloy College and I couldn't be more grateful. I'm also in the works of getting my first apartment in the city so life couldn't be more exciting.

Tell This Year's Class: SAVE YOUR VOICE. I could not stress it enough. When I went to the Jimmy's I got the same advice but I completely disregarded it because I had the impression that I had to go all out all the time to impress the people around me since it was a competition. The adrenaline will get to your head but just breath and take it easy. You will be fine and you will be great.


Catching Up with the Jimmy Awards Alumni- Part 3 Maggie Gidden

School: Orange County School of the Arts

City, State: Santa Ana, California

Jimmys Year: 2017

Favorite Memory: My favorite Jimmy Awards memory was performing in my medley. Getting the chance to perform on a Broadway stage with so many talented artists and feeling the energy from the audience was truly surreal.

Been Up To: Since the Jimmy Awards, I finished high school in a global pandemic and although I didn't get to take the stage one last time, I had the opportunity to work with the creative team of [Title of Show] to create a virtual version of their musical Now.Here.This. I am now attending Texas State University for my BFA in Musical Theatre and I love every minute. I even get to catch up with fellow 2017 Jimmy Alum's John Fredrickson and Preston Perez at rehearsal or in class!

Tell This Year's Class: Live in the moment and soak it all up! This experience is unlike anything else in the world and is SO valuable. Be sure to take as many notes as you can and make the best memories!


Catching Up with the Jimmy Awards Alumni- Part 3 Mia Cherise Hall

School: Eastridge High School

City, State: Rochester, New York

Jimmys Year: 2019

Favorite Memory: My favorite Jimmy Awards memory was by far rehearsals for the Wicked tribute. Singing that opening "Good News!" in the huge clump gave me the chills and felt like my first true Broadway performance.

Been Up To: Since the Jimmy Awards, I've been attending Syracuse University for Musical Theatre and have been spending a lot of time on Tik Tok where I make theatre and music related content.

Tell This Year's Class: Stay true to yourself and go where your heart leads you. Trust your intuition when it comes to schools and your future.

Where can we see new clips?: My Tik Tok and Instagram are both @miacherisehall and my Youtube is Mia Cherise Hall.


Morgan Kirner

School: Absegami High School

City, State: New Jersey

Jimmys Year: 2012

Favorite Memory: My favorite memory was from the costume parade! It was so exciting to see everyone transform after a week long of rehearsals for medleys and for our solos. Also, we had pizza like every night!

Been Up To: After the Jimmy Awards I got my BFA in musical theater From the Boston Conservatory. While in college, I performed in the co-production of The Little mermaid that started at Paper Mill Playhouse and went all over the country! I was also a part of the Sondheim series at the Huntington while I was still in school and then afterwards! I played Ermengarde on the National Tour of Hello, Dolly! In 2018-2019. I am really proud of my teaching career with Dreamstreet theater company in Brooklyn and becoming a certified fitness instructor all while continuing to perform!

Tell This Year's Class: Be a sponge!!!!! Take in every moment and person you meet because it's an experience of a lifetime.

Where can we see new clips?: YouTube, Instagram and Tiktok!


Catching Up with the Jimmy Awards Alumni- Part 3 Halle Mastroberardino

School: Harrison High School

City, State: New York

Jimmys Year: 2013

Favorite Memory: There was a moment in the opening number when myself, my fellow NY nominee, Harold, and our friend Sam got to strut downstage to "One Short Day" from Wicked. We geeked out over that part in rehearsals, but doing it on Broadway was unlike anything I'd ever experienced before. What a rush!!! I also love how the JIMMYS has followed me in my professional career! Myself and 4 other nominees from my year all worked together at Music Theatre Wichita a couple years after our JIMMYS experience. I also got to come back to the JIMMYS to assist Kiesha and Theo with some of the boy's medleys in 2019. I carry the connections I've made at the JIMMYS with me to this day.

Been Up To: Right before COVID happened, I had just made my Off Broadway debut in the Off Broadway Revival of Seesaw, and I've been in shows at Music Theatre Wichita and many other regional theatres. Nowadays, I am choreographing and directing musicals at a few local schools and performing arts studios, teaching dance in the tri-state area, and I run my own musical theatre podcast called Let's Take It From The Top! I'm a proud alum of Point Park University, where I continued to study with Kiesha, an opportunity that I am really grateful for.

Tell This Year's Class: The JIMMYS is a once in a lifetime experience. Do your best to throw your worry and fear aside, and try to soak up as much knowledge as you can. From Kiesha and Van, to the incredible coaches, to the amazing fellow nominees you will meet and be blown away by, these connections will follow you forever! We are so lucky to share this passion and love for theatre, and the JIMMYS feels like the Disney Land of Broadway! Have the time of your life!

Where can we see new clips?: Website - hallemastroberardino.com YouTube - https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCkSWrHxRxrlqBezTp5Oo0-A My podcast - https://letstakeitfromthetop.simplecast.com/


Catching Up with the Jimmy Awards Alumni- Part 3 Katie McKernan

School: Kearney High School

City, State: Kearney, MO

Jimmys Year: 2011

Favorite Memory: Overall, the entire experience was life changing for me. It was my turning point in terms of what I wanted my career path to be, and how I wanted to fit into this business. But one moment I will never forget was the first time we all walked on stage at the Minskoff. Many of us were in tears - it was just so special. I will be forever grateful for this experience.

Been Up To: I graduated from the University of Missouri - Kansas City with a liberal arts degree. Throughout high school, college, and beyond, I worked for Cedar Fair Entertainment Company at Worlds of Fun in Kansas City in their Live Entertainment department, and still perform there during certain special events. I now work full time at Starlight - the same organization I represented at The Jimmy Awards! I am a Community Engagement Coordinator, and work directly with our regional awards program, the Blue Star Awards, as well as several other educational programs.

Tell This Year's Class: Be open and be honest, in all aspects of life - authenticity is key. Stay true to yourself and share everything that is uniquely you - it will never steer you wrong.

Where can we see new clips?: My next adventure will be co-hosting the 2021 Blue Star Awards Ceremony.


Catching Up with the Jimmy Awards Alumni- Part 3 Jake Pedersen

School: Pine-Richland High School

City, State: Gibsonia/ PA

Jimmys Year: 2017

Favorite Memory: I loved when we all got to see the other medleys for the first time in the rehearsal room. It was such a treat to see so many talented people working together!

Been Up To: After 4 years of training, I am graduating from Penn State with a B.F.A. in Musical Theatre.

Tell This Year's Class: Live it up! You will grow and experience so many things in a short amount of time. Take every moment in :)

Where can we see new clips?: Find me on my website www.JakePedersen.com Or Instagram and TikTok @jake.ped


Catching Up with the Jimmy Awards Alumni- Part 3 Connor Riordan

School: Valley Regional High School

City, State: Chester, Connecticut

Jimmys Year: 2019

Favorite Memory: I feel like there are too many to count, but I think my favorite memory would be the feeling of camaraderie and acceptance that I felt the minute I met the other Jimmy Awards nominees. It never felt like a competition, just like one big family having fun and making some pretty incredible art together.

Been Up To: I haven't stopped acting and singing! I've been in several productions since arriving at Harvard, and have decided that I want to pursue a career in the entertainment industry in some capacity, preferably as an actor and writer. I've been focusing on writing my own material and I can't wait to keep following this dream of mine.

Tell This Year's Class: Make friends! Don't focus on the competition. I can promise you that you will be at your best when you're working with everyone rather than against them. And you'll build a great network of incredibly talented people that you'll likely work with again in the future.


Catching Up with the Jimmy Awards Alumni- Part 3 Hannah Sulak

School: Ferndale High School

City, State: Ferndale, Washington

Jimmys Year: 2015

Favorite Memory: Brisk early morning walks through the streets of New York with fellow nominees from the NYU dorms to the Tisch Studios. That and doing warmups/yoga in the lobby of the Minskoff overlooking Times Square day of the Jimmy's.

Been Up To: I have since moved to Los Angeles, and spent four years obtaining a BFA in Acting for the Stage in Screen. After a showcase, A3 Artists Agency picked me up for representation! I've gotten to work on some A-List Sets-just being in that environment is the best classroom. I've acted in Tai Verdes's music video "Stuck in the Middle", guest start in two episodes for Jubilee Media, and participated in festival shorts. Covid has thrown so many for a loop so I've also found an adoration in being a barista at a high end espresso bar (classic). I also have found a way to center myself through pursuing the craft of ceramics!

Tell This Year's Class: You'll look back on this opportunity and alway find things you would have changed, or wish you were more prepared for...but all you can do in the power of the present is to be oh so kind to yourself. You belong here. You deserve to be amongst the people in this years class. And only you can give what you can give. There is a life in art, and it will always be sculpting you, and you it. Be kind to others, and be kind to yourself. Remember the heart of why you've chosen this for yourself. How it's been used to heal you, wisen you, rejuvenate you, bring enlightenment to others. And on the topic of "others" make sure to pocket the friendship you make with the others around you in this competition, the reward isn't the title (I mean yeah that's marvelous too but..), it's these lifelong friendships. xx

Where can we see new clips?: Feel free to peep my website: https://hannahsulak.wixsite.com/actress


For more information about the Jimmy Awards, visit: JimmyAwards.com.

Photo Credit: Mark Abramson


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