ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — The winners of the annual Rochester Broadway Theatre League Stars of Tomorrow competition are headed to New York City for this year’s Jimmy Awards.

Aidan Eddy of Greece Odyssey and Lexi Lopez of Eastridge will represent our region at the annual Broadway event.

RBTL Director of Education Holly Valentine discussed their achievement and what to expect Monday during News 8 at Sunrise.

“We couldn’t be more excited,” said Valentine. “Aidan is a senior this year and we’ve known Aidan for quite a few years in our programs. He’s heading off to Baldwin Wallace next year to study Voice. Lexi is just finishing her sophomore year at Eastridge. We couldn’t be more excited for the two of them to represent all of Rochester and all of our programs here at RBTL, and all of the amazing things going on in musical theatre around our high schools.”

The two performers will be in New York City for the next week-plus. “They will run the schedule of a Broadway performer from 8:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. every day,” Valentine said. “They will be living in the dorms at Juilliard and all of their sessions will be right on the Juilliard campus. They will be assigned coaches and work one-on-one with Broadway professionals. Then next Sunday night they will have an official audition with a panel of casting directors and agents – a huge group of people in the Broadway League – and then on Monday at the Minskoff Theatre it’s the Jimmy Awards live at 7:30 p.m. It’s being streamed this year for the first time which we’re really excited about. And they will find out on Monday night along with all of the rest of us what happens and who goes on to win the 2022 Jimmy Award.”

There are thousands of students across the Rochester and Finger Lakes region who have a passion for the arts. Valentine said during this school year in particular, and through the Rochester Broadway Theatre League’s education programs, they are getting back into performing in a way that we haven’t seen since before the pandemic.

“The education program at RBTL is really at the heart of what we do,” she said. “It’s part of our mission statement. This year in particular was such a bonding year for schools with their directors, with the kids, and with the entire school body. It really was a rebuilding year for these high school musical theatre programs.”

Valentine added, “This is the first time that we were able to do Stars of Tomorrow in completion and live since 2019. It’s bringing together that community and there is nothing like arts programs in schools and it’s so needed for these kids. Theatre is a reflection of what is going on in society and there is nothing more powerful than what these students are doing in their schools to bring a sense of community, a sense of self-confidence, and a sense of dedication. The list of things that students gain from being in the arts goes on and on.”

Get more information at RBTL.org and JimmyAwards.com.