Matt Edwards

Associate Professor of Voice, Shenandoah Conservatory Artistic Director of the CCM Vocal Pedagogy Institute

College Prep: A few of the nation’s top high school musical theatre performers

CCM Bannder no dates

gold-trophyI meet a lot of teachers of high school students who want to know why their clients aren’t getting into top musical theatre programs. It is a great question and one that is hard to answer because there are a lot of factors beyond talent that are involved. However, thanks to YouTube, we can get an idea of the vocal and artistic level of the nation’s top high school students. The videos below are from two of the most prominent high school musical theatre competitions: YoungArts and The Jimmy Awards. For this post, I’ve selected students who are enrolled in highly competitive musical theatre programs. Hopefully this will give you a better idea of the talent level of students rising to the top of the 1,000+ applicants most of these schools see each year as they try to put together their class of 12-24 students. I look forward to reading your comments and hearing your thoughts. The college audition process for high school students pursuing a musical theatre degree is VERY complicated. For more information, be sure to check out my audition blog – If you enjoyed this post, please share it on social media and if you would like to receive an email when there is a new post, you can sign-up to receive email notifications below. Thanks for reading! ~ Matt

Caroline Mixon – Carnegie Mellon

Griffin Binnicker – University of Michigan

Talia Suskauer – Penn State University

John Frederickson – Texas State University

Katerina McCrimmon – Florida State University

Joe Serafini – University of Michigan

Jasmine Rogers – Manhattan School of Music Musical Theatre Program

Alex Stone – Cincinatti Conservatory of Music

Amina Faye – Penn State University

Ben Ross – Left Carnegie Mellon to be in Dear Evan Hansen on Broadway

Kailey Boyle – Baldwin-Wallace University

The next two skipped college altogether and started working after high school.

Ryan McCartan – recurring role as Diggie on the Disney Channel sitcom Liv and Maddie, Brad Majors in the 2016 Fox musical television film The Rocky Horror Picture Show: Let’s Do the Time Warp Again.

Eva Noblezada – Left high school to appear in Miss Saigon on the West End. Nominated for a Tony Award in 2017 for Miss Saigon on Broadway.

And finally three of our Shenandoah Conservatory freshmen Roman Banks and Logan Smith (YoungArts) and Shelbea Owen (Jimmy Awards)

Roman Banks – Shenandoah Conservatory (currently playing Evan in Dear Evan Hansen on Broadway)

Shelbea Owen  – Shenandoah Conservatory

Logan Smith – Shenandoah Conservatory

2 comments on “College Prep: A few of the nation’s top high school musical theatre performers

  1. Peggy McNulty
    December 1, 2017

    Dear Matt: Thanks so much for sending me this most interesting Post…I have several high school students with their eyes set on studying musical theatre in college and I think these u tube videos are so important and illuminating….

    Peggy McNulty


  2. Tiffany W
    December 15, 2017

    Hello, Matt.

    Why did you choose to leave out the two winners from the 2017 Jimmys? Both are from Orlando. If you didn’t know, Orlando and Florida, in general, are competitive and strong in musical theatre.


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This entry was posted on December 1, 2017 by in Misc. Thoughts.

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