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Ester Biggs and Scott Biggs, Intrigue Photography
Brianna R. Irvine, center, from Highland High School, won Best Supporting Actress at the 2018 Utah High School Musical Theatre Awards at the Eccles Theater on Saturday, May 12, 2018.

SALT LAKE CITY — Local high school productions of “Les Miserables” and “Tarzan” received the night’s top honors at the 2018 Utah High School Musical Theatre Awards on Saturday, May 12. Two performers, one from each of those productions, will head to New York City in June to participate in the National High School Musical Theatre Awards, also known as the Jimmy Awards.

Aria Critchley of East High School won best actress for her role in “Tarzan,” while Hillcrest High School student Bennett Chew was awarded best actor for his school’s production of “Les Miserables.” Hillcrest’s “Les Miserables” also won best musical.

Ester Biggs and Scott Biggs, Intrigue Photography
Salt Lake School for the Performing Arts performing a scene from "A Chorus Line" at the 2018 Utah High School Musical Theatre Awards at the Eccles Theater on Saturday, May 12, 2018.

According to a press release, Critchley and Chew’s participation in the Jimmy Awards includes 10 days of private coaching, master classes and rehearsals with theatre professionals, as well as a live performance at Broadway’s Minskoff Theatre.

Saturday’s award show, held at the Eccles Theater, included 10 performances by the high schools nominated for best musical, as well as medleys from those nominated in the main acting categories. Utah Festival Opera and Musical Theatre gives out awards in 18 different categories.

“I am in awe of the abilities of these high school students,” said Vanessa Ballam, the award show’s director, in the press release. “Utah Festival is honored to be a part of their artistic journey.”

Ester Biggs and Scott Biggs, Intrigue Photography
The Best Supporting Actor Medley performed at the 2018 Utah High School Musical Theatre Awards at the Eccles Theater on Saturday, May 12, 2018.

The evening’s full list of winners is below.

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  • Best musical: Hillcrest High School, “Les Miserables”
  • Best actor: Bennett Chew (Jean Valjean), Hillcrest High School
  • Best actress: Aria Critchley (Jane), East High School
  • Best supporting actor: Cooper Lavallee (Leaf Coneybear), DaVinci Academy
  • Best supporting actress: Brianna R. Irvine (Doralee Rhodes), Highland High School
  • Best cameo performance: Klara Ricks (Stepmother), Logan High School
  • Best director: Skyline High School, “Pippin”
  • Best choreography: Northridge High School, “Anything Goes”
  • Best ensemble: Salt Lake School for the Performing Arts, “A Chorus Line”
  • Best scenic design: Hillcrest High School, “Les Miserables”
  • Best orchestra: Park City High School, “The Addams Family”
  • Best costume design: Ogden High School, “Hello, Dolly!”
  • Best lighting design: Uintah High School, “The Hunchback of Notre Dame”
  • Best technical crew: Woods Cross High School, “Curtains”
  • Best student choreography: Alexis Pollack, Skyline High School, “Pippin”
  • Best student scenic design: James Schaffer, DaVinci Academy, “Jekyll & Hyde”
  • Best student costume design: Rachel Love, DaVinci Academy, “25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee”
  • Best student lighting design: Ivy Frampton, Salt Lake School for the Performing Arts, “A Chorus Line”