2020 Roger Rees Awards Winners Announced | Playbill

Education News 2020 Roger Rees Awards Winners Announced Andrew Barth Feldman and Frank DiLella hosted the digital ceremony honoring New York City-area high school performers June 1.

Pelham Memorial High School’s Meredith Heller and General Douglas MacArthur High School’s Jake Schauder were named Best Actress and Best Actor at the 10th Annual Roger Rees Awards for Excellence in Student Performance, held online June 1. Watch the ceremony above.

Heller was recognized for her performance as Rosemary in How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, while Schauder won for playing the title role in You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown. Both students say they will continue their theatrical training at college, with Heller planning on attending Manhattan School of Music and Schauder headed for Molloy College.

Wantagh Theatre won the third annual PLAYBILLder Award for Marketing in recognition of work done on their 2019 production of Rent. The award, first given in 2018, recognizes schools that create engaging marketing plans emphasizing community engagement and the use of a custom, Broadway-quality Playbill program created with PLAYBILLder.

The “You Will Be Found” College Essay Writing Challenge, which awards a $1,500 scholarship sponsored by Dear Evan Hansen producer Stacey Mindich, was won by Stuyvesant High School’s Caroline Ji.

The online event, streamed live on The Broadway Education Alliance’s YouTube channel, was produced by Cody Williams and hosted by NY1 reporter Frank DiLella and 2018 Roger Rees Award winner and Dear Evan Hansen Broadway star Andrew Barth Feldman. A pre-show was hosted by Playbill’s Ruthie Fierberg.

Highlights of the broadcast included special appearances from Jessie Mueller, Christian Borle, Eva Noblezada, Rob McClure, Celia Keenan-Bolger, Kristin Chenoweth, Benj Pasek, and Justin Paul; a performance of ”As Long as There Is Love” from the stage musical adaptation of Mrs. Doubtfire; and a special performance featuring all 18 past Rees Award winners.

Since the current health crisis prevented in-person adjudication, every NYC-area high school was invited to nominate two student performers from each officially licensed school musical production to submit a video audition. Those auditions were adjudicated by a team of industry professionals, including Kristine Bendul, Tina Marie Casamento, Andy Einhorn, and David Libby. Judges selected 25 men and 25 women from the 87 nominees to compete as finalists for the Best Actor and Best Actress awards, and a second adjudicating panel (comprising Sean McKnight, Cynthia Thole, Isaac Harlan, and Christine Riley) selected 12 finalists from this group during the ceremony.

The Roger Rees Awards are presented by BEA with support from Disney Theatricals, Camp Broadway LLC, Concord Theatricals, Music Theatre International, Nancy Nagel Gibbs, Theatrical Rights Worldwide, and other industry leaders.

Take a look at the complete list of student nominees for the 2020 Roger Rees Awards:

Evenunye Afeto, Christ the King High School
Samuel Ahn, Hunter College High School
Emma Baldwin, Xaverian High School
Cassidy Baltazar, General Douglas MacArthur High School
Olivia Barrios-Johnson, Cardinal Spellman High School
Stephanie Bieder, Walter Panas High School
Yanni Bitis, Pierson Middle-High School
Luca Bombardiere, Paul D. Schreiber High School
Andrew Bova, Miller Place UFSD
Jack Brenner, Great Neck North High School
Ryan Burton, Pleasantville High School
Liam Byrne, Plainedge High School
Benjamin Checkla, Wellington C. Mepham High School
Dylan Chong, Bay Shore Senior High School
Killian Chou, Riverdale Country Day School
Michael Cinquemani, North Rockland High School
Ciara Cole, Holy Trinity Diocesan High School
Jaden Colon, Cardinal Spellman High School
Jake Cosentino, North Babylon High School
Emily DeChristine, St. Joseph Hill Academy High School
Darren Del Orfano, West Babylon Senior High School
Ashley Deschamps, Farmingdale High School
Katie Dolce, Hauppauge High School
John Doty, Farmingdale High School
Eva Doyle, Pierson Middle-High School
Jack Finegan, Pelham Memorial High School
Liam Fitzpatrick, Pearl River High School
Jeremy Fuentes, Archbishop Stepinac High School
Grace Gallen, Riverdale Country Day School
Ellie Ganser, North Babylon High School
Leana Genovese, South Side High School
Vincent Gerardi, Hauppauge High School
Cara Gilbert, Suffern High School
Caleb Gillen, White Plains High School
Lila Goldstein, Half Hollow Hills High School East
Eli Goodwin, William A. Shine Great Neck South High School
Jenna Halvorse, West Babylon Senior High School
*Meredith Heller, Pelham Memorial High School (2020 Best Actress)
Paul Hogan, Holy Trinity Diocesan High School
Charlotte Hogan, Archbishop Stepinac High School
Jake Janata-Whittemore, Nyack High School
Ryan Jaramillo, H Frank Carey High School
Thomas Kelly, South Side High School
Aliza Kibel, Blind Brook High School
Alexa Kola, H Frank Carey High School
Kamila Kudela, Hunter College High School
John Lancia, Suffern High School
Shelby Levine, Jericho High School
Diego Lucan, Professional Performing Arts School
Keenan Lyons, Huntington High School
Kate Magocsi, Paul D. Schreiber High School
Amy Mandelbaum, White Plains High School
Jacqliene Mangini, St. Joseph Hill Academy High School
Jason Marks, Columbia Grammar and Preparatory School
Sarah McGlinchey, Clarkstown South High School
Meghan McLane, Pleasantville High School
Isabella Meath, Columbia Grammar and Preparatory School
Kyra Orgass, Wantagh High School
Tyler Palma, Floral Park Memorial High School
Theo Pearson, Sleepy Hollow High School
Bailey Peckman, Wellington C. Mepham High School
Sasha Phillips, Oceanside High School
Eden Plepler, Horace Mann School
Bailey Proctor, Alexander Hamilton High School
Dale Revelant, Oceanside High School
Anna Romani, Rye Neck High School
Adrianna Romeo, Bay Shore Senior High School
Alex Russ, Roslyn High School
Meaghan Sabino, North Salem Middle/High School
Ginger Sakarya, Sleepy Hollow High School
Angeli Santander, Floral Park Memorial High School
*Jake Schauder, General Douglas MacArthur High School (2020 Best Actor)
Ashley Schlusselberg, Great Neck North High School
Harrison Schwartz, Lawrence Woodmere Academy
Lauren Seery, Plainedge High School
Abby Semelsberger, Huntington High School
Lior Shaham, Walter Panas High School
Leonay Sheperd, Professional Performing Arts School
Alix Sholomon, William A. Shine Great Neck South High School
John Sileo, Wantagh High School
Ella Stevens, Nyack High School
Alexa Tamis, North Salem Middle/High School
Owen Trawick, Clarkstown South High School
Westin VerHoef, North Rockland High School
Autumn Washington, Lawrence Woodmere Academy
Andie Weiner, Roslyn High School
Barry Zhang, Jericho High School

For more information, visit RogerReesAwards.com.

Education News

Blocking belongs
on the stage,
not on websites.

Our website is made possible by
displaying online advertisements to our visitors.

Please consider supporting us by
whitelisting playbill.com with your ad blocker.
Thank you!