WJXT presents 'Curtains Up: The Making of a High School Musical'

The Local Station teams up with FSCJ to produce documentary-style special

By Josh Beauchamp - Senior Executive Producer of Local Programming

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - WJXT Channel 4 takes you behind the curtain with the High School Summer Musical Theatre Experience at Florida State College at Jacksonville as they prepare and present numbers from Disney’s Newsies. The hour-long special will incorporate behind-the-scenes and live performances from some of the most talented students in Northeast Florida starting at 8 p.m. on July 18.

The Local Station has teamed with FSCJ to produce a documentary-style special showcasing how the cast and crew are preparing for their performances July 19-21 and July 26-28. Curtains Up includes exclusive footage of auditions, callbacks, rehearsals, set development and a special look at the training behind one of the choreographed fight scenes. The program will also have live performances of popular Newsies songs "Carrying the Banner," "Watch What Happens," "The World Will Know," "That’s Rich," and "The King of New York."

"The partnership this year between Florida State College at Jacksonville and WJXT Channel 4 is the epitome of the word 'community.' It is a great opportunity to further highlight the more than 70 student performers from Northeast Florida who have worked so hard throughout the summer to put on this fantastic production," said Beth Harvey, director of the Wilson Center for the Arts.

Over 70 students, grades seven through 12, are cast in this production as dancers, performers and technicians to recreate Disney’s 2012 Broadway hit.

"As the only truly local television station in town we want to highlight all students from every part of Jacksonville, and we’re very proud to be the first and only station taking the time to celebrate the artistic talent seen in our community," said WJXT Vice President and General Manager Bob Ellis. "Young people involved in theater, music and dance don’t get enough recognition. We’re thrilled to show off their talents and see first-hand their hard work pay off on prime time TV."

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