Jerry Awards Title Sponsor
The Jerry Awards, one of Wisconsin’s High School Musical Awards Programs, encourages, recognizes and honors excellence in high school musical theater. The program began in the 2009/10 school year as the Tommy Awards, and was renamed in 2017/18 season to The Jerry Awards after philanthropist and arts supporter W. Jerome Frautschi. Educators and industry professionals review productions at more than 85 high schools in 30 counties around the state providing valuable feedback. The program elevates the importance of musical theater within high schools.
Learn about the impact of the Jerry Awards in the following personal testimonies:
• Kate Janssen: Jerry Awards program exemplifies Overture’s commitment to the next generation
• Amber Kind-Keppel: Jerry Awards recognize powerful work of high school theater programs
• Sarah Karlen: Jerry Awards positively impact students, directors, communities
• Gail Becker: Investing in Overture is nourishing your soul
School and student achievements are honored and featured in an awards show held at Overture Center in June and two outstanding performers are selected to represent the program at The National High School Musical Theater Awards (The Jimmys) competition in New York City.
Students at participating high schools can participate in The Jerry Ensemble, become a Student Critic, and receive special ticket deals to Broadway and other performances at Overture Center, The Marcus Performing Arts Center, the Grand Theater and the Fine Arts Center at Viterbo University. Check out the Participation Guide for more information.
Overture Center is pleased to partner with the Marcus Center for the Performing Arts, The Grand Theater and Viterbo University expanding the reach of the Jerry Awards to Milwaukee, Wausau and LaCrosse area schools.
2020-21 JERRY AWARDS PROGRAM UPDATE & PLAN
As we are still in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic we have decided to adjust the focus for this year from school productions to student performers – specifically with preparation for The Jimmy Awards in mind.
For 2020-21, students can register to be a part of The Jerry Company. There is no audition process to become part of the company, students just need to register and pay a $25 registration fee. Students needing financial assistance just need to email Karra Beach. Schools can register and pay for students to participate via the same registration link (above).
Members of the Jerry Company will be invited to virtual webinars and workshops focused on performance skills (singing, acting, dancing) and other musical theater topics. These webinars will be led by experts and participating students will have the option to watch them live or view the recording for a week following the live session. There will be assignments students will be expected to work on after each. By the end of the series, each student will have picked two songs for characters they could realistically play, that showcase their vocal range that are ideal for them to use to audition for The Jimmy Awards.
This year, students who wish to represent our program at The Jimmy Awards need to participate in The Jerry Company. For this year only, the 2021 Jerry Awards Show will feature members of The Jerry Company and will be the conclusion of the audition process for The Jimmy Awards. Students must be conflict free and available for all days during the NHSMTA week, tentatively scheduled for Sunday, June 20 – Thursday, July 1, 2021.
Watch the 2020 Jerry Awards!
Thank you to everyone who watched and contributed to the event!
I See Stars – Performed by the 2020 Jerry Ensemble:
You Will Be Found – Performed by the 2020 Spirit Award Recipients:
Overture’s JERRY AWARDS on PBS Wisconsin
Overture and PBS Wisconsin collaborated in celebrating the important work done in high school musical theater and are excited to share the talent and dedication with viewers around the state. The Jerry Awards is thrilled to be a part of PBS Wisconsin’s multiyear Young Performers Initiative, which celebrates Wisconsin’s young artists and those who inspire them. Videos from past awards shows can be found on PBS Wisconsin’s website.
Looking for a photo from a past Tommy or Jerry Awards Show? View Mark Frohna’s photographs of the past awards shows.
Find out more about our resources and programs for educators.
Past Award Recipients
Overture Center is pleased to partner with Marcus Performing Arts Center, The Grand Theater, Viterbo University and PBS Wisconsin.
Contact Programming and Community Engagement Manager Karra Beach