ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Dozens of talented high school students from 26 area schools brought their best stuff to the stage Thursday.

The 24th annual Stars of Tomorrow program — hosted by the Rochester Broadway Theatre League — returned to the Auditorium Theatre after a 3-year hiatus due to Covid.

The program, which is modeled after the Tony Awards, recognizes student performances on a number of criteria including dance, acting, singing ensembles, and the overall production.

“My favorite sound in the world is when we start the show and there are almost 2,000 high school musical kids in the audience cheering each other on,” said RBTL’s Director of Education Holly Valentine. “You will never see any better camaraderie than in this room tonight.”

News 8 is a long-time sponsor of the program and on Thursday, Theresa Marsenburg got to welcome the students.

In addition to Thursday’s winners, select performers will be chosen to represent Rochester in New York City at the National Awards program.

There’s one more contest we’re hosting. Beginning at noon on Friday, fans can log on and vote for their favorite nominee. The featured students with the most fan votes will receive a prize pack.