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Illinois High School Musical Theater Festival

This past weekend, Tony and I had the chance to go down to Illinois State University to represent Broadway In Chicago at the Illinois High School Theatre Festival. We got the chance to meet incredible students who are so passionate about theatre.

TheatreFest by the numbers

4,183 – registered students and sponsors

172 –high schools represented in attendance

1 out of 4 – the ratio of schools in attendance at the festival

39 – students selected to be a part of the 2012 All-State Company of Almost, Maine

21 – schools who presented full-length plays and musicals at the Festival

As you can see – it really was an impressive weekend!

Broadway In Chicago was at the Festival to share some exciting programming we have for students.

We are thrilled to announce The Illinois High School Musical Theater Awards. This newly-established Illinois chapter of the National High School Musical Theater Awards will serve as an annual national celebration of outstanding achievement in musical theater performance by high school students. At TheatreFest, we had the chance to talk with many students who are either auditioning for or performing the lead roles in their high school musicals this year, and we are so excited to receive their applications to represent their schools in this program.

We also have incredible workshops led by Chicago professionals. There’s no better trip for theatre students than to come to Chicago for a full day of sightseeing, an educational theatre workshop, and seeing a Broadway In Chicago show.

I am so grateful for all of the theater teachers who lead the programs in these schools. Most of them do it for little to no money, but do it because they love it and know how important it is to their students. We were able to give a small thank you to teachers by raffling off tickets to BRING IT ON: THE MUSICAL, a historic theatre tour, and a chance for some of their students to help lead an Educational Workshop.

The best thing about being at TheatreFest was knowing that we were meeting the upcoming leaders and stars of Chicago Theatre. The students at this festival are some of the most talented, hard-working students in the country. Whether they go on to be actors, directors, producers, patrons, designers – you can tell that these students have a future in the best industry in the best city. I am so excited for theatre in Chicago!

-Jamie Lynn