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Utah Festival Presents Eighth Annual Utah High School Musical Theatre Awards

Utah Festival Presents Eighth Annual Utah High School Musical Theatre Awards More than 600 students from 24 high schools will take the Eccles Theater Stage for the eighth annual Utah High School Musical Theatre Awards May 12. The Awards represent a musical theatre scholarship program that rewards excellence at the high school level. Ten show-stopping numbers from 10 juried musicals will showcase the Best Musical finalists from schools across the state.

During the 2017-2018 school year, Utah Festival Opera and Musical Theatre judges traveled across the state to evaluate 34 productions staged by an impressive with 2,815 student technicians, musicians and performers. The winners perform at the awards ceremony.

"Hundreds of students from across the state come together on one evening to create magical, inclusive and inspiring art," said Vanessa Ballam, education director for Utah Festival Opera and Musical Theatre.

The evening will be hosted by Utah Festival's founding director, Michael Ballam. The program includes medleys performed together by all contenders for Best Actor, Best Actress,

Best Supporting Actor and Best Supporting Actress. Some candidates for Best Musical include "Anything Goes," "9 to 5," "The Addams Family" and "A Chorus Line."

"The evening is overflowing with the most talented students in our state doing what they do best," Ballam said.

Utah Festival and other sponsors will provide an all-expense paid trip for the winners of the Best Actor and Best Actress categories to represent Utah at the National High School Musical Theatre Awards in New York City in June where they will experience 10 days of private coaching, master classes and rehearsals with theatre professionals. The week culminates at Broadway's Minskoff Theatre when they perform and compete for the prestigious Jimmy Award, which includes scholarships, opportunities for professional advancement and other awards.

Utah performers are developing a strong reputation at the national level. Last year, two Utah High school performers, Jessica Lewis and Levi Hopkins, won the Chevron Award for Best Actress and Best Actor in the state competition and traveled to New York City for the national competition. Both won top honors and special recognition scholarships from Tams-Witmark Music Library they can use at the University of their Choice.

The education and outreach department of Utah Festival Opera and Musical Theatre in Logan sponsors and produces the event through a generous partnership with MagicSpace Entertainment and Broadway at the Eccles.

"To have these awards take place in the new Eccles Theater is a perfect way to honor the young talent in our state," Ballam said.

The UHSMTA will present awards in 19 different categories from the Hotel Monaco Award for Best Director to the Daynes Music Award for Best Orchestra and the Zions Bank Award for Best Musical. Call 800-262-0074 for tickets. Visit for more info.

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