Iowa High School Musical Theater Awards Announces Exciting Changes

Each year, more than 5,000 students are impacted through the Iowa High School Musical Theater Awards (IHSMTA) program, a year-long signature Des Moines Performing Arts (DMPA) community initiative. The program focuses on enhancing the talents of high school thespians and their schools' theater programs, while providing a platform for recognition. The IHSMTA program launched in 2013 with nine Central Iowa schools participating and has grown to serve 68 schools across the state.

As part of the organization's commitment to enhancing quality of life in Iowa, EMC Insurance Companies has signed on to support the IHSMTA program as the Title Sponsor. This sponsorship will further support the program's growth as it continues to impact schools in every corner of the state.

"The IHSMTA program enhances Iowa communities-especially for young people," said Bruce Kelley, EMC president and chief executive officer. "EMC is proud to support organizations that positively impact communities across Iowa."

The IHSMTA program culminates with more than 500 students having their moment to shine on the Civic Center stage as part of the IHSMTA Showcase (June 4, 2018, at 7 p.m.). Select students will perform highlights from their schools' productions, create interschool medleys under the direction of Broadway professionals and receive awards for the various elements of their musicals.

For the first time, the Showcase will be live-streamed at as part of an exciting collaboration with Iowa Public Television. IPTV will air a highlights special of the evening later this summer.

"Providing feedback and recognition for the hard work these students and directors do is incredibly important, and we are delighted to have EMC join us as the program's Title Sponsor," said Jeff Chelesvig, president and CEO of DMPA. "We also recognize that, as the Program has grown to reach across the state, not every person who wants to attend the Showcase can make it. So, we are thrilled to be working with IPTV to offer new ways to engage with this truly moving evening."

Showcase tickets will be available starting at 9 a.m. on Wednesday, May 16, 2018, at, the Civic Center Ticket Office and by phone at 515-246-2300.

About Des Moines Performing Arts
Des Moines Performing Arts is a private not-for-profit organization celebrating 39 years of presenting the performing arts to Iowa and the surrounding states on four stages in Des Moines - the Civic Center, the Stoner Theater, the Temple Theater and the newly renovated outdoor space, Cowles Commons. Des Moines Performing Arts is a presenter of major Broadway and educational touring companies, performers and groups, and is home to many local and regional groups, including the Des Moines Symphony. All performances of the Broadway Series are supported by Willis Auto Campus. All performances at the Temple Theater are supported by Prairie Meadows. All performances of the Family Series are supported by Wellmark Blue Cross and Blue Shield. For more information, visit

About EMC Insurance Companies

EMC Insurance Companies is among the top 60 insurance organizations in the country based on net written premium, with more than 2,500 employees. EMC was organized in 1911 to write workers' compensation protection in Iowa. Today, EMC provides property and casualty insurance products and services throughout the United States and writes reinsurance contracts worldwide. Operating under the trade name EMC Insurance Companies, EMCC and one or more of its affiliated companies is licensed in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. For more information, visit

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