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Photo Flash: The First Annual JIMMY Awards

Nederlander Alliances, LLC and Pittsburgh CLO, co-producers and founding partners of The National High School Musical Theater Awards, presented the first annual Jimmy Awards in a ceremony held last night at the Skirball Center for the Performing Arts, New York University. The Jimmy Award is named in honor of legendary Broadway theater owner and producer James M. Nederlander. The award features an illustration of James M. Nederlander drawn by world renowned artist Al Hirschfeld.

The awards show was hosted by television and theater personality Kathie Lee Gifford.  

The Jimmy Award for Best Performance by an Actress was awarded to Jenny Wine from Wichita, KS. She represented the Music Theatre of Wichita's Jester Awards.

The Jimmy Award for Best Performance by an Actor was awarded to Stephen Mark from Norwich, CT. He represented the Spirit of Broadway Theater's Connecticut High School Musical Theater Awards.

Both winners are eligible for four-year scholarship assistance to attend the NYU Tisch School of the Arts Department of Drama, contingent upon acceptance into the program.* In addition, The Nederlander Organization presented both winners with a check for $10,000 to help these talented students pursue their dreams.

This year's honorees were chosen from a field of talented high school students representing regional competitions in the United States. The National High School Musical Theater Awards participants took part in five days of musical theater rehearsals, master classes, private coaching sessions and interviews with theater professionals at NYU's Tisch School of the Arts. Winners were chosen by a panel of industry experts including Scott Ellis (Roundabout Theatre Company); Kent Gash (Tisch School of the Arts); Montego Glover (Memphis, The Color Purple); Alecia Parker (NAMCO); Nick Scandalios (Nederlander Organization and Bernie Telsey (Telsey + Company, MCC Theater).

Two arts education awards were also presented during the ceremony.

The Jimmy Award for an Outstanding Arts Education Program was presented to Paula Ohaus from Hoboken High School in Hoboken, New Jersey. She was nominated by Paper Mill Playhouse in New Jersey. The award was created to honor a high school teacher or administrator who demonstrated an enduring commitment to quality performing arts education. Ms. Ohaus is an example of the consummate artist/educator. She proactively seeks opportunities for her students to see live theater and to learn about the creative process and business. She also runs a young critics program. The award includes a $5,000 cash prize to be used for the winner's arts program.

Camp Broadway also presented a Jimmy Award to Lynda Hodges, an arts advocate and theater educator at Dr. Sun Yat Sen Middle School 131 in Chinatown, New York. Ms. Hodges is a dedicated New York City theater teacher who for 15 years has worked tirelessly to introduce Shakespeare to Asian, Hispanic and African American children-many of whom English is a second language. Camp Broadway will support Ms. Hodges efforts with a $500 gift and provide her school with StageNotes lesson plans; an in-school residency on musical theater; the rights to a musical from Theatrical Rights Worldwide catalog and the opportunity for her 6th, 7th and 8th grade class and her theater club to see a Broadway show.

The NHS Musical Theater Awards is a national celebration of outstanding student achievement recognizing individual artistry in vocal, dance and acting performance by high school students. The following professional regional theaters were represented at the competition: Casa Mañana, Forth Worth, TX; Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre, Atlanta, GA; FCLO Music Theatre, Fullerton, CA; Helen Hayes Youth Theatre, Nyack, NY; Hershey Theatre, Hershey, PA; Kansas City Starlight Theatre, Kansas, MO; McCoy Rigby Entertainment, Yorba Linda , CA; Music Theatre of Wichita, Wichita, KS; North Carolina Theatre, Raleigh, NC; North Shore Music Theatre, Beverly, MA; Paper Mill Playhouse, Millburn, NJ; Pittsburgh CLO, Pittsburgh, PA; Rochester Broadway Theatre League, Rochester, NY; The Old Globe, San Diego, CA; The Spirit of Broadway Theater, Norwich, CT; and Theatre Under the Stars, Houston, TX.

Additional information is also available on The National High School Musical Theater's web site,

* Scholarship recommendations will be made by the Tisch School of the Arts faculty and all recommended students must meet all of the School's admission criteria.

Pittsburgh CLO has been a driving force behind the preservation, creation and promotion of live musical theater since 1946. As one of the largest regional musical theater organizations in the United States, Pittsburgh CLO is fortunate for the support of nearly 200,000 patrons each year. In addition to producing fresh new productions of Broadway classics, the non-for-profit's mission is to develop new works and showcase new talent. The organization's dedication to the musical theater art form extends beyond its main-stage season with the CLO Cabaret Theater, the Pittsburgh CLO Academy of Musical Theater, the Construction Center for the Arts, and the acclaimed Gene Kelly Awards for Excellence in High School Musical Theater, 19 year-old program and first of its kind in the country.

NEDERLANDER ALLIANCES, LLC is a division of Nederlander Presentations, Inc. the producing arm of a family company prominent for three generations in management and operation of theaters and productions of distinguished entertainment. The Nederlander Organization owns and/or operates nine Broadway theaters and runs a notable chain of legitimate theaters around the world. The company is currently represented on Broadway by Walt Disney's The Lion King and West Side Story. Broadway productions include: Legally Blonde The Musical, Hairspray, Rent, Wicked, The Drowsy Chaperone, Walt Disney's The Little Mermaid, Movin' Out, Copenhagen, The Will Rogers Follies, Me and My Girl, Les Liaisons Dangereuses, Breaking the Code, La Cage aux Folles, Benefactors, Annie, Noises Off, Lena Horne: The Lady and Her Music, My Fat Friend, Seesaw, Applause, Whose Life Is It Anyway?, The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby, The Dresser, Nine, Woman of the Year and many revivals including Sweet Charity, Hello, Dolly!, Porgy and Bess and Peter Pan.

NYU TISCH SCHOOL OF THE ARTS DEPARTMENT OF DRAMA integrates a combination of rigorous conservatory training and broad-ranging academic education. In partnership with some of the country's foremost professional theatre training institutions, the program offers comprehensive conservatory training in acting, directing, musical performance, design, and theatre production. The program also offers an expansive and innovative academic curriculum. The faculty is composed of nationally and internationally recognized theatre artists, scholars, and theorists. The curriculum is further enriched by required courses in the humanities and social sciences. An extensive internship program connects students to the professional theatre community of New York City. The program is complemented by challenging and innovative productions that welcome guest artists from a range of culture and artistic perspectives. Graduates of the program include Alec Baldwin '94, Kristen Bell '02, Raúl Esparza '92, Philip Seymour Hoffman '89, Bryce Dallas Howard '03, Felicity Huffman '88, Dan Jinks '85, Moisés Kaufman '89, John Leguizamo '83, Michael Longoria '02, Idina Menzel '93, Molly Shannon '87, and Chandra Wilson '91.

James M. Nederlander, or Jimmy as he is known in the theatrical community, is the Chairman of the Nederlander Producing Company of America Inc. For more than 60 years, he has been the producer of distinguished entertainment for which he has received 34 nominations and won 11 Tony® Awards for Best Production of a musical or play and has presented artists ranging from Nureyev to Sinatra to Billy Joel to U2. Currently, his organization, under the leadership of James L. Nederlander, operates nine legitimate theatres on Broadway including the Brooks Atkinson (Rock of Ages), Gershwin (Wicked), Lunt-Fontanne (The Little Mermaid), Marquis (9 to 5), Minskoff (The Lion King), Nederlander (Neil Simon's Brighton Beach Memoirs), Richard Rodgers (In The Heights) and the world famous Palace Theatre (West Side Story). The company also operates theaters in Detroit, Los Angeles, San Diego, Tucson, Durham, Chicago and London. Mr. Nederlander has produced or co-produced dozens of plays and musicals, most notably Annie, Applause, Peter Pan, Copenhagen, The Will Rogers Follies, Movin' Out, Les Liaisons Dangereuses, Me and My Girl, La Cage aux Folles, Nine, Noises Off, Lena Horne: The Lady and Her Music, Benefactors, Sugar Babies, The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby, Woman of the Year, and many others.

Photo Credits: Jenny Anderson / Bruce Glikas

Photo Flash: The First Annual JIMMY Awards
The 32 National High School Musical Theater Award contestants perform the opening number

Photo Flash: The First Annual JIMMY Awards
Jimmy Award Winners Jenny Wine and Stephen Mark

Photo Flash: The First Annual JIMMY Awards
Jenny Wine

Photo Flash: The First Annual JIMMY Awards
Stephen Mark

Photo Flash: The First Annual JIMMY Awards

Top Row: Nick Scandalios and Margo MacNabb Nederlander
Front Row: James L. Nederlander, James M. Nederlander and Charlene Nederlander
Jenny Anderson / Bruce Glikas.

Photo Flash: The First Annual JIMMY Awards

Pittsburgh CLO Executive Producer Van Kaplan and James M. Nederlander

Photo Flash: The First Annual JIMMY Awards
Nick Scandalios, Kathie Lee Gifford, James L. Nederlander and Van Kaplan

Photo Flash: The First Annual JIMMY Awards
Nick Scandalios, Van Kaplan, Kathie Lee Gifford, James L. Nederlander and the 32 NHSMTA contestants

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