Acclaimed actress and singer Kristin Chenoweth graced the stage with Mansfield ISD students in a community concert on Saturday, Nov. 2.
The performance in Mansfield was the debut of Chenoweth's "For the Girls" concert, which she will be performing on Broadway later in November.
MISD high school musical theatre students were featured in the concert as the opening act and performed with Chenoweth on stage. The students also had the opportunity for a private coaching with Chenoweth prior to the rehearsal and live performance.
"I'm very rarely speechless, but at this point and time, I can't even put into words how excited I am," said Colby Jones, senior at Mansfield High School. "She's done so much. She's such a good person, and it's amazing just to be in the same state as her."
Chenoweth’s career spans film, television, voiceover and stage. She has performed to sold-out audiences across the world, including performances at Carnegie Hall and Royal Albert Hall.
The Oklahoma native held a question-and-answer session before the concert to give students more insight into the entertainment industry.
"She said even though she got her awards and everything, she still had to audition," said sophomore Anyssa McDonald from Summit High School. "I was like 'Oh, if she has to audition every time, then that's good because I have to audition every time.' So I'm lucky to have an equal opportunity."
Students from technical theatre classes, led by Summit High School teacher Melissa Iverson, transformed the lobby area of the MISD Center for the Performing Arts into the City that Never Sleeps.
Attendees were able to walk through a winter wonderland in Central Park, see the downtown subway station, tour the Smithsonian and then enter the auditorium with a Broadway-like marquee right above them.
"We really worked as a team with our students to design something beautiful, something iconic and something that's going to make everyone who walks through those doors feel like this is New York City," said Iverson. "We always say to dream big, and this was an opportunity for them to dream as big as they could."
This year marks the fourth year MISD has hosted an elite, award-winning entertainer to perform with Mansfield ISD students on stage. Previous artists included Kirk Franklin, Amos Lee and Crowder.
Proceeds from the Chenoweth concert go toward the MISD Center Arts Program, which brings in art performances and cultural events to MISD students and the community.