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Orlando's Tony Moreno & Sofia Deler Win Top Honors at the 2017 Jimmy Awards, Hosted by Tony Winner Ben Platt

Orlando's Tony Moreno & Sofia Deler Win Top Honors at the 2017 Jimmy Awards, Hosted by Tony Winner Ben Platt
Tony Moreno, Ben Platt & Sofia Deler
photo by Henry McGee
Orlando's Tony Moreno & Sofia Deler are the big Jimmy Award winners!

Sofia Deler and Tony Moreno, both representing the Applause Awards in Orlando, FL, earned top honors at the ninth annual Jimmy Awards. The event was hosted by Dear Evan Hansen Tony Award winner Ben Platt and was held June 26 at Broadway’s Minskoff Theatre, which houses Disney's The Lion King.

Deler won Best Performance by an Actress for her performance as Woman 1 in Songs for a New World at William R. Boone High School in Orlando, FL. And Moreno won Best Performance by an Actor for his performance as Don Quixote/Cervantes in Man of La Mancha at Trinity Preparatory School, which is also in Orlando. Both winners were presented with a check for $10,000 to further their education. They will also be eligible for a four-year merit and a need-based scholarship to attend the New Studio on Broadway, NYU Tisch School of the Arts Department of Drama, contingent upon acceptance into the program.

In addition, six finalists each received a $2,500 scholarship toward their future education from the Barry and Fran Weissler Foundation:
· Antonio Cipriano, Sutton Foster Ovation Awards (East Lansing, MI)
· Maggie Gidden, Spirit of the MACY Awards (La Mirada, CA)
· Nathan Keffer, Spotlight Awards - Nashville High School Musical Theatre Awards (Nashville, TN)
· Hatty King, Spotlight Awards - Nashville High School Musical Theatre Awards (Nashville, TN)
· Sam Primack, ASU Gammage High School Musical Theater Awards (Tempe, AZ)
· Jasmine Rogers, Tommy Tune Awards (Houston, TX)

The annual Broadway-focused talent showcase featured performances by all 74 nominees and solos by select finalists. Their debut on a Broadway stage followed eight days of rehearsals and private coaching with faculty at the New Studio on Broadway, NYU Tisch School of the Arts Department of Drama and other professionals. Students also enjoyed a performance of Come From Away, including a talkback with the cast.

Winners were selected by a panel of judges comprised of notable theatre professionals including Tony Award-winning producers, award-winning casting experts and industry professionals. Broadway stars Andréa Burns, Randy Graff, Adam Kantor, Michael McElroy, Howard McGillin and Schele Williams served as coaches for the nominees in preparation for the ceremony. The production was directed by Van Kaplan and choreographed by Kiesha Lalama, with musical direction and arrangements by Michael Moricz.

The Jimmy Award is named in honor of the late James M. Nederlander, Chairman of Nederlander Producing Company of America. Presented by the Broadway League through the Broadway League Foundation, the Jimmy Awards are a culmination of a nation-wide celebration of high school talent. The Jimmy Awards were founded in 2009 by Nederlander Alliances, Pittsburgh CLO, and the Broadway Education Alliance.

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