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Interview: Meet the 2023 Jimmy Awards Winners- Langston Lee & Lauren A. Marchand

The 14th Annual Jimmy Awards took place June 26, 2023 at the Minskoff Theatre.

By: Jun. 29, 2023
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On Monday night, Lauren A. Marchand and Langston Lee's lives changed forever when they were announced the winners of the the 14th Annual Jimmy Awards. As finalists from The Roger Rees Awards (New York, NY) and the Heller Awards for Young Artists (Austin, TX) respectively, both were selected out of 96 finalists and recieved a check for $25,000 to further their education.

watch as they perform their winning solos ("With You" from Ghost and "Wondering" from The Bridges of Madison County) and read on as BroadwayWorld checks in with the pair following their big wins!

Have you digested Monday yet? How did it feel to hear your name?

LM: Monday is up there with the best moments of my life thus far. I’ve never felt such pride in myself and excitement about something before! When I heard my name called, I cried tears of joy and I just remember feeling so happy. Each and every person on that stage was so incredibly talented, and I was so happy to have been wrapped in such love and support from all of them. 

LL: To be honest I really haven’t processed all that has happened. It was a surreal experience to say the least hearing my name. In that moment I realized how much power story telling had and what acting can do and how much my skill was appreciated, and it made me very grateful and humbled!

Other than the moment of winning, what was your favorite part of Jimmys day?

LL: I would say that my favorite part of the Jimmys was the closing. Seeing everyone embrace each other and genuinely feel this sort of positivity, joy and happiness explode on stage was something really special. Knowing that wherever we go we are tied together as a family and singing together one last time was so so special and I’ll never forget it!

LM: My favorite part of the Jimmy’s was when we performed the finale on the Minskoff stage. Though we had to continue performing, our emotions got the best of us. We cried, hugged, and enjoyed that magical moment all together one last time. The love and support from everyone on that stage was overwhelming and I will never forget it. 

Interview: Meet the 2023 Jimmy Awards Winners- Langston Lee & Lauren A. Marchand  Image

What advice do you have for younger kids across the country who have dreams of getting to the Jimmys one day?

LM: I would say that the universe works in magical ways, and that you should accept every opportunity it sends you. By a beautiful turn of events, I made it to the Jimmys and won. Like many theater kids, I have been watching videos of the Jimmy awards since I was ten, and it is amazing to finally become a part of it. Life is such a beautiful thing, and hard work pays off.

LL: I would say always be humble, learn, and be YOU. Because there really is only one you and no one can recite that monologue or sing that piece as well as you can or LIKE you can. So, if you remain authentic whilst being humble and constantly learning you are on the track to success!

Is there anyone you forgot to thank last night that you'd like to shout out now?

LL: Yes! I would love to thank The Heller Awards, my regional program from Austin! And Texas Performing Arts for making this Jimmys trip happen! Because of them me and Kyra Carr were the first ones from Austin to go to the Jimmys, so I am so beyond grateful for them. 

LM: In the whirlwind of Monday night I regret not thanking the cast, crew, tech, and pit band of Frozen on Long Island who brought the show together. Without them, that show would not have been possible, I stand on their shoulders, and I am grateful for each and every one of them. 

Interview: Meet the 2023 Jimmy Awards Winners- Langston Lee & Lauren A. Marchand  Image

What's next? Do you have any post-high school plans yet?

LM: I am set to attend NYU Steinhardt in the fall, majoring in Vocal Performance in Musical Theater. I am so excited to get started and to learn more about both the professional and technical side of my craft. I plan to audition and hopefully perform in the years to come on Broadway.

LL: I will be attending the Juilliard school for a BFA in acting. I’m super excited for the journey that lies ahead of me in New York!

Click here for a full list of finalists and here to watch highlights!

The National High School Musical Theatre Awards®, better known as the Jimmy Awards®, is a coast-to-coast celebration of outstanding student achievement, recognizing individual artistry in vocal, dance, and acting performance. The 2023 Jimmy Awards features 96 nominees from 48 regional awards programs making their debuts on a Broadway stage. During this unforgettable talent showcase, a panel of judges will select two students to receive the coveted awards of Best Performance by an Actor and Best Performance by an Actress.

The Jimmy Awards®/The National High School Musical Theatre Awards® (NHSMTA®) program impacts 140,000 students who participate in nearly 50 regional high musical theatre competitions sponsored by presenters of touring Broadway productions throughout the United States. Named for Broadway impresario James M. Nederlander, the program has been the catalyst for more than $6,000,000 in educational scholarships.

Photo Credit: Tricia Baron