A THREE-PART PRIMETIME SERIES PREMIERING SEPTEMBER 9th at 7pm on WTVP-HD
- GO BEHIND THE SCENES AS THE NATION’S TOP HIGH SCHOOL MUSICAL THEATER STARS COMPETE ON BROADWAY -
It’s non-stop drama when 60 of America’s top high school musical theater performers arrive in
New York City this summer for an intensive week of “theatrical boot camp” as they vie for a shot at stage
stardom in the ultimate national theater competition. The annual event is the subject of the new three-part
primetime series, BROADWAY OR BUST,
airing Sundays this fall, beginning September 9th at 7pm on WTVP-Public Media for Central Illinois.
BROADWAY OR BUST will be the first-ever TV series to capture the behind-the-scenes
coaching and grueling rehearsal schedule leading up to the National High School Musical Theater Awards (NHSMTA).
Popularly known as “The Jimmy Awards”—named in honor of renowned Broadway theatre owner and producer James M.
Nederlander—this national competition culminates in a unique weeklong New York experience—a make-it-or-break-it
week of rehearsals, coaching and auditions that are capped by an awards event on a Broadway stage in front of a
live audience and a panel of high-profile judges.
Producers WGBH Boston and Lance K. Shultz have teamed up with the National High School Musical
Theater Awards, created by Nederlander Alliances, LLC and Pittsburgh CLO, and produced by The Broadway Education
Alliance in association with Pittsburgh CLO, and 30 top regional musical theater programs to bring this series to
PBS. Airing as part of the PBS’ Arts line-up, a multiplatform commitment to make the arts accessible to all,
BROADWAY OR BUST is comprised of three hour-long episodes and airs on consecutive Sunday nights,
September 9-23 from 7:00-8:00pm on WTVP-HD 47.1 (check local cable and satellite listings).
“WGBH is thrilled to be working with Lance Shultz and the NHSMTA to bring audiences across
the country a look at the enormous talent of these young performers, and the emotional process they endure
as they take on a once in a lifetime opportunity to compete at ‘The Jimmy Awards’,” says WGBH Executive
Producer of Lifestyle Productions, Laurie Donnelly. “We believe that these performers will truly touch the
hearts of viewers as they have ours, positioned against the magical backdrop of Broadway.”
Part competition, part performance and part non-fiction drama, BROADWAY OR BUST
will capture the highly charged atmosphere as the country’s most talented teens are plunged into the
theatrical capital of the world to compete for a shot at Broadway and college scholarships. In addition to
being hosted by Broadway stars Constantine Maroulis and Deborah Cox surprise visits and cameo appearances by
some of today’s biggest Broadway names will offer the kids insider perspectives and tips about working on
the Great White Way.
“Full of captivating performances, compelling characters and dramatic storylines, this series
will pull back the curtain to show viewers the whole process—the talent, ambition, drive, vulnerability,
discipline, resiliency, dreams dashed and dreams fulfilled—both the highs and lows of what it takes to make
it to Broadway,” says BROADWAY OR BUST, executive producer, writer and director, Lance Shultz.
The series begins as young talent from all over the country try to catch their big break at
highly competitive, regional musical theater awards competitions in over 30 cities including, San Diego, Memphis,
Atlanta and Pittsburgh. Next, follow the finalists in New York for a grueling and energizing week of
behind-closed-door performances, voice and acting sessions. The final hour will showcase “The Jimmy Awards,” at
New York’s Minskoff Theatre, the finalist performances, the celebrity hosts and presenters, and the naming of
the winners—the top male and female performers.
BROADWAY OR BUST is a co-production of WGBH Boston and Lance K. Shultz, in
association with the National High School Music Theater Awards. Funding for the series is provided by PBS. For
additional information, please visit pbs.org/broadwayorbust.
About WGBH Boston
WGBH Boston is America’s preeminent public broadcaster and the largest producer of PBS content for TV and the Web,
including Masterpiece, Antiques Roadshow, Frontline, Nova, American Experience,
Arthur, Curious George, and more than a dozen other prime-time, lifestyle, and children’s series.
WGBH’s television channels include WGBH 2, WGBH 44, and the digital channels World and Create. WGBH TV productions
focusing on the region’s diverse community include Greater Boston, Basic Black, and High School
Quiz Show. WGBH Radio serves listeners across New England with 89.7 WGBH, Boston Public Radio; Classical New
England; and WCAI, the Cape and Islands NPR® Station. WGBH also is a major source of programs for public radio
(including The World), a leader in educational multimedia (including PBS Learning Media, a free online service
providing the nation’s educators with curriculum-based digital content to meet 21st-century learners’ needs), and a
pioneer in technologies and services that make media accessible to the 36 million Americans who are deaf, hard of
hearing, blind, or visually impaired. WGBH has been recognized with hundreds of honors: Emmys, Peabodys,
duPont-Columbia Awards…even two Oscars. Find more information at
About Lance K. Shultz, Co-Producer, Writer, and Director
Lance Shultz has produced, directed, written, executive-produced and distributed an array of award-winning television
programs for domestic and foreign broadcast markets. In addition to non-fiction television, genres include reality
shows, national television commercials, and live Las Vegas stage shows and special events. Mr. Shultz’s films have
aired on PBS, The Discovery Channel, A&E, and other network. Mr. Shultz has also produced and directed specials which
include some of Hollywood’s top names such as John Travolta, Sidney Pollack and music legends Jimmy Paige of Led
Zeppelin, Brian Johnson of AC/DC, and Charlie Daniels.
About The National High School Musical Theater Awards /JIMMY™ AWARDS
The National High School Musical Theater Awards (NHSMTA) is a celebration of outstanding achievement in vocal, dance
and acting performance, developed to elevate the profile of in-school arts education across America, provide college
scholarships and create pathways connecting promising young performers to the professional theater industry. Each year,
50,000 teenagers at 1,000 high schools participate in the program. Students who win lead actor and actress awards at
their regional high school musical theater awards competitions convene in New York City for five days of private
coaching and rehearsals at the New Studio on Broadway, NYU Tisch School of the Arts Department of Drama, in preparation
for their Broadway debut at The Jimmy™ Awards. The program was founded in 2009 by Pittsburgh CLO and Nederlander
Alliances LLC, under the leadership of James L. Nederlander, and is produced by The Broadway Education Alliance in
association with Pittsburgh CLO. It has been supported by The National Endowment for the Arts, The Broadway League,
The Shubert Organization and other industry organizations and foundations committed to nurturing future artists and
audiences. The Jimmy™ Award is named for James M. Nederlander, the legendary Broadway theater owner, in honor of his
vision and generous support of young artists. For more information please visit
About Pittsburgh CLO
PITTSBURGH CLO has been the driving force behind live musical theater in Pittsburgh and the Southwestern
Pennsylvania region since 1946. Under the direction of Van Kaplan since 1997, this not-for-profit arts organization
appreciates the support of nearly 200,000 patrons each year and produces a subscription series, educational programs
and develops and invests in new works and national tours, including 13 Broadway shows (13 Tony® Awards) including the
current production of Evita and the national tour of The Addams Family. The organization’s dedication to the musical
theater art form includes programs such as the CLO Academy, the CLO Mini Stars, the Gene Kelly Awards, the Richard
Rodgers Award, the Construction Center for the Arts, the CLO Cabaret and The National High School Musical Theater Awards.
About The Broadway Education Alliance
BROADWAY EDUCATION ALLIANCE is a not-for-profit corporation dedicated to supporting the theatre industry through the
development of coalition programs between performing arts institutions and philanthropic partnerships with public and
private entities. The mission is to raise awareness around and fund arts education programs and provide services that
inspire creativity, build confidence and stimulate thinking in American’s youth. The organization is a member of the
New York Institute of Technology’s Education Enterprise Zone®.
PBS, with its nearly 360 member stations, offers all Americans the opportunity to explore new ideas and new worlds
through television and online content. Each month, PBS reaches nearly 123 million people through television and more
than 21 million people online, inviting them to experience the worlds of science, history, nature and public affairs;
to hear diverse viewpoints; and to take front row seats to world-class drama and performances. PBS’ broad array of
programs has been consistently honored by the industry’s most coveted award competitions. Teachers of children from
pre-K through 12th grade turn to PBS for digital content and services that help bring classroom lessons to life. PBS’
premier children’s TV programming and its website, pbskids.org, are parents’ and
teachers’ most trusted partners in inspiring and nurturing curiosity and love of learning in children. More information
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apps for mobile devices.
For further information contact Linda Miller, WTVP Vice President of
at (309) 495-0591 or firstname.lastname@example.org