On November 29, Disney+ drops the fourth episode in the original series High School Musical: The Musical: The Series, with a little something extra.
Olivia Rodrigo, who plays the show’s lead Nini, makes her songwriting debut with the ballad “All I Want.” Watch a snippet in the video above.
The mockumentary series, created and written by Broadway’s Tim Federle, is set at East High, the school where the original High School Musical filmed. Yet, the drama program at East High has never put on a production of the stage adaptation High School Musical: The Musical. When the new drama teacher, Miss Jenn, finds out, she immediately programs it as the school musical. The Series is a documentary-style look behind the scenes as the “real” students of East High put on the show.
Nini [SPOILER ALERT] is the East High student cast as Gabriela. In "real" life, she recently broke up with Ricky, who got cast as Troy, and is dating EJ, who plays Chad. Dramaaaa.
Federle insisted that the team cast young performers who could sing live and bring authenticity to their roles. “I knew that really talented singers who could really sing live can do something that touches an audience that autotune can’t,” Federle told Playbill. Rodrigo is a prime example.
“Olivia wrote this emotional, in-depth song in just three days while filming the series and going to school,” he added in a statement. “She has shown her strength not only as a composer and performer but also as a modern young woman who brilliantly channeled what the Nini character is going through as she begins to take control of her own narrative.”
And, there’s more where this came from. An upcoming episode will feature a song co-written by Rodrigo and co-star Joshua Bassett, who plays Ricky.