In the Heights nominated for 11 awards out of 15 categories, including Best Production

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Bailey Kerns, Life and Arts Editor

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The cast of this year’s musical, In The Heights, will travel to the Long Center April 13 for the Greater Austin High School Musical Theater Awards. In The Heights was nominated for 11 different awards, out of 15 categories, and will attend the Tony Awards-style ceremony where the winners of each category will be announced.

“It’s funny because I was telling people as we were rehearsing that I kept getting more and more nervous because the show was getting that good,” director Stephanie Smith said. “I just was hoping that the rest of the world would think it was as good as I did. The fact that these very prestigious people recognized it as such an amazing show feels awesome.”

From October to opening night in January, a cast and crew of over 90 people put in numerous hours of work to produce the show. Smith said the cast as a whole was fabulous.

“It was just a team where everybody took care of their part,” Smith said. “The dancers were incredible, the vocalists were incredible, the actors were incredible. I feel like every single member of that company felt that putting on that show was important, so they dedicated themselves to doing that, and that’s what made it such a great show.”

The musical told the story of how a small neighborhood can truly be a family. Playwright Lin-Manuel Miranda’s show was brought to life by a tech crew, dance ensemble, vocal ensemble, company and lead roles.

“I think our whole cast performed the show perfectly,” junior Elliot Esquivel said. “Everyone was into it 100 percent of the time, and it really led to us putting on an amazing show. I think the outstanding acting, dancing and singing skills of the cast is what got us 11 nominations. They were just simply amazing.”

According to the Long Center’s official website, In The Heights received the most nominations out of the 31 participating schools. One award the musical is in the running for is Best Production, and this is the first year the school has received the nomination.

“I’m excited about all of the nominations, but I’m most excited about receiving Best Production because that means that we get to perform on the Long Center stage,” Smith said. “That’s the nomination that comes with the ability for us to present our show to the world.”

The cast has been preparing to show the audience a sense of family and bring a piece of Washington Heights to the stage. They are ready for others to see the hard work and dedication that was put into the production.

“I knew it was a good show,” Smith said. “I knew we had something good on our hands, and I’m just so thrilled that this group recognized it. I think it was an overwhelming sense of success and accomplishment, and it was an honor to tell such a great story. There was a sense of team and family, and it was a great example of people coming together to do something awesome.”

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