Shubert Foundation High School Theater Festival allows NYC kids to shine on a Broadway stage

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NEW YORK—Evan Dominguez is just two months away from graduating from LaGuardia High School for Music, Art and Performing Arts.

And there’s no question in his mind what he’s planning to do with his future.

"Next year I’m going to act," Dominguez said.

He’s also one of 150 New York City public school students who got the opportunity of a lifetime, the chance to perform on a Broadway stage!

"This is the 4th year of the Shubert High School Theater Festival and it's really an opportunity to showcase high school students and what they can achieve when we give them professional support," Peter Avery, founder of the program, explained.

The festival is the vision of Avery, the Director of Theater for the New York City Board of Ed.

Avery, along with the Shubert Foundation, has helped bring this festival to life at the Shubert Theater the past four years.

"Yes they’re teenagers, yes they’re kids. But our kids are the best kids in the country. This is the next generation of artists. They’re all here and for them to say they made it on Broadway in high school is amazing," Avery said.

Only five schools from around the city are chosen to perform.

This is the third time students from LaGuardia High School are getting to participate in the event.

This year, they performed a montage from their production of “42nd Street.”

"The environment is completely different from what we’re used to at school but it’s a great way to transition from one place to another," one student named Joao Marcus Das Chagas said.

Another student agreed.

"Clearly this is amazing. So many famous people have been here and the fact that I get to be on this stage means the world to me and I know to the rest of the cast," Grace Sautter said.

Their assistant principal, who made her own Broadway debut as Grace Farrell in the original production of “Annie” calls the festival a gift from the city’s Board of Ed.

"To see these great kids, these talented kids. I’m just gonna start crying just talking about it. Some of them don’t even know how talented they are and to be able to see it and encourage it and to let it flower. Does it get any better as a teacher?" Sandy Faison asked.

For some, this will be their one and only time on a Broadway stage.

And for others, like Evan.

"This is gonna be my first time on a Broadway stage, but hopefully not my last!"

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