Broadway actors will be part of the 2017 International Thespian Festival, a celebration of student achievement in the performing arts. The event is produced by the Educational Theatre Association and attended by more than 4,000 students and teachers. This year's festival will be held June 19–24 in Lincoln, Nebraska.
Broadway’s Rebecca E. Covington (Beautiful), Arbender Robinson (In Transit), and Kristen Beth Williams (Pippin) will join 28 students, representing 13 states and Canada, for the opening performance.
The opening show, entitled We Tell the Story: A Celebration of the works of Ahrens & Flaherty, spotlights the works of Tony winners Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty—the composing team behind Anastasia, Once on This Island, Ragtime, Seussical, and more. Students, who will work alongside professional writers, actors, and musicians, rehearse and produce the show in 48 hours.
EdTA Executive Director Julie Theobald said in a statement, “The Educational Theatre Association is committed to continually raising the bar for Thespians and connecting them with talented professionals. In 2017, those professionals include Executive Producer Matt Conover, Disney Parks Live Entertainment; Producer Eric Cornell, Anastasia; Artistic Director J. Jason Daunter, A Doll's House, Part 2; and Musical Arranger/Supervisor Jason Yarcho, Wicked; among others.”
The 2017 International Thespian Festival opening show cast and crew list follows.
Adam White, Troupe 7052, McKinney Boyd High School (McKinney, Texas)
Arianna Hardaway, Troupe 4048, Heritage High School (Conyers, Georgia)
Bryson Jackson, Troupe 7052, McKinney Boyd High School (McKinney, Texas)
Cherish Myers, Troupe 513, Westerville South High School (Columbus, Ohio)
Chloe Abram, Troupe 7398, The Ensworth High School (Nashville, Tennessee)
Connor Ripperger, Troupe 69, Dubuque Senior High School (Dubuque, Iowa)
Lucy Geller, Troupe 750, South Eugene High School (Eugene, Oregon)
Maura Cunning, Troupe 3093, Lake Havasu High School (Lake Havasu City, Arizona)
Mitchell Lewis, Troupe 1795, Floyd Central HS (Floyds Knob, Indiana)
Nathan Bonsall, Troupe 1811, Kearney High School (Kearney, Nebraska)
Nicholas Boegel, Troupe 3681, Widdifield Secondary School (North Bay, Ontario)
Sylvia Fisher, Troupe 830, Pennsbury High School (Yardley, Pennsylvania)
Brett Rose, Troupe 7050, Cypress Woods High School (Cypress, Texas)
Catherine Adams, Troupe 5022, Mehlville High School (St. Louis, Missouri)
Emily Hayman, Troupe 513, Westerville South High School (Columbus, Ohio)
Eva Granger, Troupe 7050, Cypress Woods High School (Cypress, Texas)
Grant Perry, Troupe 4463, Sylvania Northview High School (Sylvania, Ohio)
Hailey Brunson, Troupe 8104, Rock Ridge High School (Ashburn, Virginia)
Hannah Kane, Troupe 8104, Rock Ridge High School (Ashburn, Virginia)
Jerran Kowalski, Troupe 1794, Floyd Central High School (Lanesville, Indiana)
Kendall Swendsen, Troupe 7014, Seven Lakes High School (Katy, Texas)
Madison Sutton, Troupe 2526, Texas High School (Texarkana, Texas)
Martin Benesh, Troupe 1470, Mt. Vernon High School (Mt. Vernon, Iowa)
Meghan Emanuel, Troupe 8104, Rock Ridge High School (Ashburn, Virginia)
Nathan Dunahoo, Troupe 739, North Scott (Cedar Rapids, Iowa)
Sean Gardner, Troupe 8093, Brownell Talbot (Omaha, Nebraska)
Thomas White, Troupe 4379, Poplar Bluff High School (Poplar Bluff, Missouri)
Zach Brunkhorst, Troupe 5140, Fort Zumwalt North High School (O’Fallon, Missouri)
Visit SchoolTheatre.org for more information.