The 2024 HAYA Season Has Begun

We’re breaking records this year with 37 Austin-area high schools participating in this year’s Awards! Needless to say, April 17 is going to be one for the books.
ABOUT THE HELLER AWARDS

Imagine Austin’s version of the Tony Awards — only more impactful! The Heller Awards for Young Artists boosts visibility for high school musical theatre programs and produces a community-building event while celebrating the talent and discipline of thousands of students and educators in the Greater Austin area. 

Participating schools come together to pay tribute to the value of arts education, collaboration, and creativity. Through award recognition, master classes, hands-on training with industry professionals, critical evaluations with constructive feedback, scholarships, program grants, and community-wide awareness, the HAYAs celebrate, elevate, and expand musical theatre and the arts in our schools, families, and communities. 

Starting in 2014 with 19 participating schools, the program has exapanded exponentially, supporting the continued growth of young adults into the leaders of tomorrow. Whether their futures lie in the performing arts, private sector, public service, or fields that don’t exist yet, the HAYAs are their gateway to a bright, colorful future.

WHY MUSICAL THEATRE?

Musical theatre is more than fan kicks and jazz hands — although it’s definitely those things! When children and young adults participate in arts education, they learn how to develop new skills, how to work with a team to achieve a goal, and how to turn an idea into reality.

Much like sports, musical theatre creates an environment for students to develop universal skills such as discipline and leadership. While programs like the Heller Awards can catapult driven and talented young people into performing arts careers, arts education is not only beneficial for future performing artists. It also fosters the development of well-rounded, resilient, and grounded adults ready to give back.

2023 Impact
33 schools  
16 Districts 
14 Title 1 Schools 
3,000 Student Participants 
15,000 Students Impacted 
60,000 Combined student population  
75 Teachers 
2024 Nominations

Catch us on YouTube Sunday, March 3 at 5pm for the 2024 Heller Awards Nominations Announcements!

Make 2024 a Year to Remember

Celebrate the 2024 Heller Awards with a show program ad or video shoutout! These not only support our students and the future of arts education, but all proceeds go directly back to the Heller Awards program to make sure it continues year over year. Check out what items are included in the Memories Package, including HAYA t-shirts, photo prints & digital downloads, and more.

Interested in Sponsorship?

Get more details below on sponsorship packages or contact Julia Campbell, Director of Development at jcampbell@thelongcenter.org

Thanks to our 2023 Sponsors

Participating Schools

AKINS
High School Musical JAN 18-20

BASTROP
Les Misérables School Edition SEP 28 – OCT 6

BURNET
The SpongeBob Musical FEB 1-3

CEDAR CREEK
In the Heights FEB 1-6

CEDAR PARK
Elf DEC 1-3

CEDAR RIDGE
Marry Poppins JAN 31 – FEB 3

CROCKETT
Little Shop of Horrors NOV 3-5

DEL VALLE
Little Shop of Horrors OCT 26-28

DRIPPING SPRINGS
Mamma Mia! JAN 18-22

EAST VIEW
Mean Girls FEB 1-3

ELGIN
Alice by Heart JAN 18-20

GEORGETOWN
Anything Goes OCT 20-22

HENDRICKSON
Into the Woods JAN 25-27

HUTTO
Chicago: Teen Edition DEC 1-3

JACK C. HAYS
The SpongeBob Musical DEC 1-10

JOHN B. CONNALLY
The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee FEB 1-3

LAGO VISTA
Seussical NOV 9-12

LASA
Les Misérables School Edition JAN 26 – FEB 3

LEANDER
Matilda the Musical JAN 25-28

LEHMAN
Little Shop of Horrors JAN 12-14

LOCKHART
The SpongeBob Musical JAN 18-27

MANOR
Gretel! The Musical NOV 8-10

MARBLE FALLS
A Charlie Brown Christmas DEC 16-17

MCCALLUM
Sweet Charity SEPT 29 – OCT 8

MCNEIL
Legally Blonde OCT 5-7

MOE & GENE JOHNSON
Mean Girls DEC 1-9

NYOS
Twelfth Night JAN 26-27

PFLUGERVILLE
How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying FEB 2-3

ROUND ROCK
Sweeney Todd: School Edition JAN 17-20

ROUSE
The Addams Family JAN 25-27

SAN MARCOS
Into the Woods JAN 26-28

TOM GLENN
Mean Girls OCT 19 – NOV 4

VISTA RIDGE
Urinetown JAN 31 – FEB 3

WEISS
Footloose NOV 30 – DEC 2

WESTLAKE
You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown OCT 26-28

WESTWOOD
Mean girls JAN 25-27

ZACH
The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee OCT 28-29

Select Ensemble

The Heller Awards for Young Artist’s Select Ensemble provides an exciting opportunity for passionate and dedicated high school students to represent their communities throughout the year. Each fall, interested students audition for the honor of receiving one of the 25+ spots available in that year’s Select Ensemble, which rehearses from November through April, with a music video-style filmed performance for nominations and — of course — the HAYA ceremony itself. As representatives of the Greater Austin community of high school musical theatre students, the Select Ensemble opens the awards show and performs during the ceremony. The Select Ensemble will learn performance skills for various media including: studio recording, film, and live theatre. In addition to the performance training, students gain skills in promotions, public relations, fundraising, and producing.

Auditions for the 2024 Awards are closed. 

Our 2023 Impact

Last year’s Heller Awards celebrated…

33 Participating Schools

16 Districts

14 Title 1 Schools

75 Teachers

3,000 Student Participants

15,000 Students Impacted

60,000 Combined Student Population

Follow Along

Find us in your favorite corner of the internet.

Want to support?

All HAYA donations and sponsorships go directly to subsidize program costs so that we can continue to keep this program FREE for all participating schools.

Award Categories

Save the Date! 2024 Awards Ceremony takes place Wednesday, April 17

With 18 categories, these Awards aim to honor the entire high school musical experience from start to finish, including all the hard work in between, from the front of the house to the back.

Lead Performer – Male Category
Lead Performer – Female Category
Supporting Performer – Male Category
Supporting Performer – Female Category
Featured Performer – Role
Featured Performer – Ensemble
Ensemble
Scenic Design
Costume Design
Lighting Design
Choreography

Musical Direction
Orchestra
Technical Crew
Direction
Production

STUDENT ACHIEVEMENT AWARDS

Design
Stage Management
Marketing & Publicity

Want to support this program and be a part of the action?
Wanna support future artists?

Be a sponsor and make a difference.

Wanna be a participating school?

Get more info on being a participating school and what makes this program so great.

Looking for your school portal?

If you’re a current participant, find your school’s link for log-in below.

Year-End Gift 2023 | Long Center
Your Support Today, Transforms Tomorrow

We’ve made it our mission to support creativity in all its forms, and we hope this season you’ll join us and do the same. Your donation doesn’t just support our work, it’s a declaration that creativity belongs to everyone