Thursday night is a very big night for hundreds of young actors as the 2013 High School Musical Theatre Awards takes place at The Orpheum Theatre in Downtown Memphis.
Winners in the best featured male and female category will get an audition in front of Broadway producers in New York City.
The best actor and actress award winners will also appear on Friday's Good Morning Memphis.
As they say, there's no business like show business, and it's true. For anyone who has ever gathered the inner strength to walk out on a stage and perform in front of an audience, well, they know, it's a special feeling
It is also a very special feeling to perform on the stage of The Orpheum Theatre where the High School Musical Awards show takes place.
Hallowed ground indeed.
"You know I've had the absolute privilege to perform at Carnegie Hall and the Orpheum Theatre is the closest thing that I have ever seen or performed at," said Caroline Jones, High School Musical Awards master of ceremonies.
As a singer and songwriter Jones knows the rewards that come with performing.
"You know it's inspiring Earle, this is why I do the school tour, this is why I travel around the country performing at schools and performing for young people who are really passionate about the arts," Jones said. "It's not that long ago that I was one of those dreamers in high school. I still consider myself a dreamer. We are all following our dreams."
Jon Mathias, a junior at Lausanne Collegiate School, is nominated along with the entire cast of a stage production put on by the private East Memphis school. He gets what Jones is talking about.
"It's a pretty big deal," Mathias said. "I'm so glad to be a part of it cause there is nothing like performing live on a stage like the Orpheum Theatre. It's the only experience in Memphis like it."
Jada Tate made her first stage appearance this year at Lausanne Collegiate School along with Jon. She is nominated as a featured performer.
"If you really, really want to do it, go for it. It's the best thing, especially when you get rewarded like this," she said. "I say it's really fun. Maybe a little bit better than a sport than I every played because you get to work hard and then once you see your work come forth on stage. It's amazing."
Ashley Buggs Brown see's the magic happen year after year. Kids that had no idea they had that special something that compels them to step out on a stage and perform.
"You never know until you try," Buggs Brown said. "Go to an auction, go watch an audition. If you're nervous about it go watch one and see what it's like, and I promise you if every kid I know, if they do a show they want to do more. It's a great experience for everybody involved."
CLICK HERE TO SEE THE HIGH SCHOOL MUSICAL AWARDS VIDEOS
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