From June 26-July 1, 62 teenagers — who hail from 31 regions across the United States — have been preparing for the 2013 National High School Musical Theater Awards, which take place at Broadway's Minskoff Theatre hosted by 2013 Tony Award nominees Laura Osnes and Santino Fontana.
Throughout the week students met with seasoned Broadway performers and creative artists, attended vocal coachings and rehearsals to stage this year's ceremony, where they will perform and represent musical theatre competitions (where they were previously presented with an award for their performance in their high school production) sponsored by professional theatre organizations in cities across America. A panel of judges determines the recipients of the Best Performance by an Actor and Best Performance by an Actress awards.
Benton Felty and Emily Homburger represent the Hershey Theatre Apollo Awards in Hershey, PA, for their respective performances as Freddy in Dirty Rotten Scoundrels and Annie Oakley in Annie Get Your Gun.
Felty and Homburger continue to update Playbill.com with an exclusive blog that takes readers behind the scenes and into the rehearsal rooms. Click here for the first blog from Felty and Homburger from June 26-27.
Benton Felty: June 30
Well, today was the big day — audition time.
We also performed our medleys that we will perform on Monday night for the Jimmy Awards judges. On top of that, it was the fist time our Jimmys chaperones ever saw us perform our solos and medleys! Let me tell you, we did not disappoint.
The guys took what their solo sounded like on Saturday and increased it by five levels — including myself! I tried my hardest to make the judges laugh, and I succeeded.
I performed "I'm Not That Smart" from The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, and I felt so satisfied every time I heard a laugh. My favorite part about it all was that one judge was Montego Glover, the lead actress from Memphis, which happened to be the first show I ever saw on Broadway! And, she laughed at my performance! That was one of the best feelings I have experienced this week.
Now that the anticipation of auditions is over, it's time for the final tier of the program: The Performance.
We leave for Broadway's Minskoff Theatre tomorrow, and I don't think I'll be able to sleep tonight! But until then, goodnight from NYC!