Posts Tagged ‘National High School Musical Theatre Awards’

My Journey to The Jimmys – Jack Cahill-Lemme, IHSMTA 2016 Best Actor

Posted on: July 21st, 2016 by B.I. C. No Comments

By Jack Cahill-Lemme

After winning the IHSMTAs things moved very quickly. I had to really strap down and start choosing my song selections as fast as I could. After they were selected, Ceci and I got the opportunity to work on them with Nick Cosgrove, who has always been something of a childhood hero of mine due to the fact that he came from my high school and when I was in eighth grade I was lucky enough to have seen him in Jersey Boys (as Frankie Valli). That same day we gave the curtain speech at The Sound of Music at the Cadillac Palace Theatre. I’ve been seeing shows there since I was a tiny little kid so being able to walk around backstage was a thrill in itself, going on the stage at the end of the show and addressing thousands of people was just the cherry on top.


L to R: Cecilia Trippiedi, Howard McGillin, and Jack Cahill-Lemme. Howard McGillin (longest-running Broadway Phantom) coached Jack for the week leading up to the Jimmy Awards.


When it came time to go to New York I felt very prepared and was anxious to start out on the experience that I had been dreaming of having since middle school, having seen the documentary years before. Because I had seen the documentary, and stalked the Jimmy’s YouTube channel for hours at a time every chance I got, I knew for the most part what I was getting myself into. Keisha, the choreographer, was a diehard professional who demanded the best out of each and every nominee and that is exactly what she got. I learned an immense amount from her in just 10 short days and if any of my college professors are anything like her, I cannot wait. Besides working with Keisha, I was coached by Howard McGillin, who holds the record for longest running Phantom in the world. This was surreal for me because The Phantom of the Opera was my first and favorite show I had ever seen on Broadway and Phantom has always been my dream role. Along with his phenomenal coaching, we were also introduced to an array of Broadway legends (Andrew Lloyd Weber, Eden Espinoza, and Karen Olivo, just to name a few).

Jack Cahill-Lemme performing as Edward Bloom from “Big Fish” onstage at The Minskoff Theatre 7/27/16. Photo by Henry McGee.


The best part of it all by far though was performing on the Minskoff stage on Broadway, which is where The Lion King is currently playing. As a kid growing up in the theatre, all your life you hear about the impossible dream that is Broadway and stories about those who have performed there. You start to wonder if it actually lives up to its reputation. Now I can finally say after standing there and performing on that stage, it was everything they say and more. I am forever grateful to those who made this experience possible for me and most of all to Broadway In Chicago for selecting me as their representative. It was the time of my life.

My Journey to The Jimmys – Cecilia Trippiedi, IHSMTA 2016 Best Actress

Posted on: July 19th, 2016 by B.I. C. No Comments

Cecilia vocal audition

By Cecilia Trippiedi

My journey to the Jimmy Awards began four years ago when my mom and I watched the documentary “Broadway or Bust”. Ever since viewing that show, I knew I wanted the National High School Musical Theatre Awards to be in my future. I trained in private voice and dance throughout my life and patiently waited for my school, Carl Sandburg, to choose a musical with a qualifying female lead. I was cast as Eliza Doolittle in “My Fair Lady” and that role landed me a nomination as one of twelve girls competing for the title of Best Actress at the Illinois High School Musical Theatre Awards. I went into auditions with an open and clear mind and put my training and passion out in the open for everyone to see – and it paid off. When it was announced that I was chosen to represent Illinois in NYC I was beside myself. To this day I still don’t believe that all of it was real. It would be my first time in New York and I was elated to say the least.

The Jimmy Awards was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. I made lifelong friends and truly got a taste of what the professional industry is like. It was also an amazing springboard into college, where I will be pursuing a BFA in Musical Theatre with a Dance Concentration from Otterbein University. I am going into my freshman year with copious amounts of training and knowledge as well as inspiration.

Illinois’ John Clay III & Taylor Marie Sherry Make Broadway Debut At National High School Musical Theatre Awards

Posted on: July 1st, 2013 by broadwayinchicago No Comments

jimmys 2Every year, the Nederlander Organization recognize America’s future Broadway stars with the National High School Musical Theatre Awards. The Jimmy’s (fondly named after Nederlander Organization president James M. Nederlander) awards one promising young actor and one promising young actress with merit scholarships, professional advancement and other prizes. This year, John Clay III of Oak Park River Forest High School and Taylor Marie Sherry of St. Charles North High School represent Illinois.