Broadway Kids Camp presents “High School Musical Jr.” on Saturday

Published 6:35 pm Thursday, July 25, 2019

For teens and tweens in the mid-2000s, the Disney Channel’s “High School Musical” was no less than a cultural phenomenon. With catchy music and a lesson of looking beyond stereotypes, the hit movie will receive a local retelling at the Turnage Theatre on Saturday, courtesy of Arts of the Pamlico’s Broadway Kids Camp.

“High School Musical Jr.” takes the stage at the Turnage Theatre for two shows this weekend, featuring all the fun and musical numbers of the original, performed by local kids.

“It’s kind of like Disney’s new rendition of the idea of ‘Grease,’” director Dylan Ritch said. “It talks a lot about cliques in high school and how you express yourself as an individual and the multiple facets that make up an individual.”

The story follows Gabriella Montez, a new transfer student at East High School, who changes the way the school perceives various students. Many of the students turn out to be more complex than they appear on first glance, from a basketball player who loves to bake to a science nerd who enjoys hip hop dancing.

The cast portraying these characters is an eclectic mix of kids. Ranging in age from 8 to 14 years old, the group is made up of Broadway Kids Camp veterans and newcomers alike.

“It’s awesome,” said Zachary Jordan, a long-time Broadway Kids Camp actor. “I just love it.”

Now in his sixth or seventh year with the show, Jordan says he keeps coming back for the fun and because of the great directors. For new kids also, the camp presents a great opportunity to either build on past experiences or try something new.

“I can’t do it at my school anymore because I’m too old, so I just wanted to try it out,” explained newcomer Emma Davis.

For the kids who participate in the program, it’s a three-week crash course on theater, from auditions and blocking all the way up to dress rehearsals and performances. This compares to the average of four weeks most professional theater companies have to prepare for a show.

“The first week was all about auditioning and blocking the show, and then the second week was more about choreography,” explained Rhynn Alligood, a second-year performer. “This week has been just fixing things up and running it.”

Performances of High School Musical Jr. will take the stage at 2 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. Saturday. Tickets are $5 with cash or $7 with a credit card. Tickets can be purchased at or by calling 252-946-2504.