Theatre Under the Stars

What is the Tommy Tune Awards Program?

The Tommy Tune Awards (TTA) Program celebrates the educational value, artistry and community of high school musical theatre in the Greater Houston Area. 

Education: No matter the role in the creative process, experiences in the arts cultivate confidence, spark creative thinking, and inspire life-long learning. 

Artistry: The arts are a safe haven for exploration, reflection, and innovation. The Tommy Tune Awards is as an opportunity for students and educators to share their creative accomplishments as individuals, collaborators, and members of the greater Houston community. 

Community: We believe in the power of learning, collaborating, and growing together. As we celebrate our shared experience of musical theatre, we as an artistic and educational community enhance the future of our students, our art, and our city. 

Houston area high schools produce a full-length musical¬†to¬†compete in over 15 TTA categories. Each school is adjudicated by a team of volunteer Mentors, professional Houston-based music/theatre artists, based on a 100-point scale rubric. This process runs October to March with top scorers receiving nominations to be announced mid-March. Finally, after a rehearsal period involving the nominees and two school representatives, a virtual awards show will be presented to the community in celebration of the participant’s artistic accomplishments.¬†


  • Houston area schools will participate in an adjudication process running from October 2021 to March 2022.¬†¬†
  • Participating schools will be adjudicated on their production of an eligible, licensed live musical by up to three Mentors based on a 100-point scale rubric.¬†
  • Each school will provide TUTS Tommy Tune Awards content (e-Playbill, production/backstage photos, and archival video) in preparation for a widely distributed virtual show.¬†
  • Schools can include Tommy Tune Awards media/materials for outreach and marketing.¬†
  • Scores provided by the adjudicating Mentors will be audited by a professional accounting service. Top scores in each category will then be nominated for the award in that category.¬†
  • Nominations are announced in all categories which will require additional paperwork/video content for nominees.¬†
  • Post-awards show, participants will receive commentary feedback from the Mentors, sent directly to school TTA contacts (creative team and administration).¬†


August 23-27, 2021 School Applications Accepted 
September 3, 2021 Announcement of Participating Schools 
September 14, 2021 Director Meeting (Virtual) 
September 27, 2021 Licensing Acquisition Date 
October 2021 Adjudication Period Begins 
March 2022 Adjudication Period Ends 
March 20, 2022 Nominations Announced 
April 4, 2022 Rehearsal Period Begins (schedule subject to change) 
May 1, 2022 Tommy Tune Awards Ceremony 
Dates are subject to change.

Requirements – To Participate Schools Must:

  • Application must be received by August 27, 2021 (COB). 
  • Participating schools must be within Forty-Five (45) miles of TUTS 
  • Why? Timing. With participating schools producing evening/weekend shows, it is difficult to schedule Mentors further than 45 miles.  
  • Produce a musical during the 21-22 adjudication period (October 2021 – March 2022) that aligns production requirements detailed by the National High School Musical Theatre Awards (NHSMTA). 
  • Why? The Tommy Tune Awards follows the model of the NHSMTA, the arm of the Broadway League that produces the Jimmy Awards. For more information about NHSMTA and qualifying shows/roles, please go to www.jimmyawards.comBe sure to check if your show is eligible! Questions? Email Jacob at 
  • Produce a show that has a minimum of two (2) evening performances preferably Friday and/or Saturday. 
  • Why? Scheduling Mentors to adjudicate shows requires a lot of moving parts. Weekend shows with options make it easier to ensure an easy adjudication. 
  • Cast majority high school students. 
  • Schools may be K-12, or have relationships with their feeder schools, and are able to cast younger students. These younger students are not eligible for nomination.  
  • Acquire licensing for production by September 27, 2021 and let your licensing house know that you are participating in this program. 
  • Why? Licensing is required to be a part of TTA. Contact if you have any issues with your licensing process. 
  • Participate in a Directors Meeting. 
  • Why?¬†It‚Äôs helpful for everyone to get on the same page. There is a lot of information and there are many expectations.¬†¬†
  • Hold onto Orchestral Scores at least until after nominations. Some nominees will not be able to return their orchestra books to the licensing house until after the awards on May 1, 2021.  
  • Why? For several categories, the Tommy Tune Musical Director will need to see the full score and use the orchestral books to prepare for the Awards Show. Post-awards, the school is solely responsible that all Orchestra Books are retrieved from the Tommy Tune Awards and returned to the licensing house.  
  • Present two students from school to participate in a production number in the Awards Show.  
  • Why? The purpose of including students from every school is to build community and make sure that all schools have an opportunity to shine. More information about this process will be available in the Tommy Tune Post-Nomination Guidelines.  


The Tommy Tune Awards follows the model of the National High School Musical Theatre Awards, the arm of the Broadway League that produces the Jimmy Awards. For more information about NHSMTA and qualifying shows and roles, please go to  

If you have any questions about if your show qualifies, please be sure to reach out to  

Definition of an Approved Musical as spelled out by the National High School Musical Theatre Awards:

  • Held performances in a major New York City/Broadway theatre, professional regional, or touring theatre outside of New York City prior to being made available for licensing to the regional, amateur, or school theatre/circuit.
  • ¬†Was originally conceived and produced for a core audience over eight years of age.¬†
  • Is officially available for a performance license by a high school from the licensing entity that manages such licenses on behalf of the rights holder for such musical.¬†
  • Regional Awards Program (TTA) officially licensed from the licensing entity that manages such licenses on behalf of the rights holder for such musical.¬†
  • Is the standard or school edition/version; The following editions/versions are not eligible: 101 Collection, Broadway Junior, G2K (Getting to Know Series), Young Performers Edition, and¬†Young@Part. Concert versions are not permitted.

GUidelines for Communications

  • Quick and thorough communication is vital during many points of the Tommy Tune Awards Process. Please be sure that you are communicating as effectively as possible with the Tommy Tune Awards Team.¬†¬†
  • Each school will appoint one Primary Contact Person, and a Secondary Contact. All of the contact information will go to the Primary Contact, while cc-ing¬†the Secondary.¬†¬†
  • The school contacts are the individuals to whom all TTA correspondence will be addressed. It is vital that these people have access to mail, e-mail, phone calls between now and the awards ceremony.¬†
  • The contact person must return all forms by the deadline indicated on each form. Failure to return forms by the deadline may result in disqualification of a school for that year and an alternate school being assigned in their place.¬†
  • Any individuals reaching out to the Tommy Tune Team must email¬† Please do not directly email TTA Team members, as we do not want to miss your correspondence.¬†¬†
  • Any individuals reaching out to the Tommy Tune Team must email¬† Please do not directly email TTA Team members, as we do not want to miss your correspondence.¬†¬†
  • Read everything. If you have a question please reach out, but also be sure to check your packets, your emails, and the website first.

2021-2022 Tommy Tune Award SEASON acTION chART

Action Details Date Due How do I do that? 
Solidify Licensing  Please send a copy of your Letter of Agreement from your Licensing House and inform them of your participation in the Tommy Tune Awards. 9/27/2021 Email:, Subject:  
(School Name) Licensing 
& upload to School’s Online Folder provided by TTA. 
Performance Details Form Complete production form for adjudication. 2 weeks prior to Opening Form emailed directly 
TTA Playbill Ad Advertise that you’re a TTA School! Images will be sent via email. 
Facebook Announcement We want everyone to come to see your shows!  
Include Show Poster, Show dates and Times, How to buy tickets 
Tag @tommytuneawards  
1 week prior to Opening Make sure you tag @tommytuneawards. 
Check your tag when you’re done! Can’t find it on the page? Email  
Adjudication Day! Liaison & Mentor Holding Room 
Upload Playbill Share PDF in Microsoft Office File Request  1 week after show Email 
Upload Video We need a full archival video of your production. It can be edited but must be submitted on time.  2 weeks after show. 
If production in March: 1 week after show. 
Upload to 
Microsoft Office File Request 
Upload Cast & Production Photos 1 week after show. Upload to 
Microsoft Office File Request 
HOLD Orchestra Scores Please hold onto your scores and orchestra books until after nominations. Please communicate with your licensing house.  Turned in after nominations. A process for checking-in scores after nominations will be in place in the Post Nomination Guidelines.

Pre-Show Media & Marketing Requirements:

  • Social Media Blast, AKA: Facebook Post 
  • On your Department‚Äôs Facebook Page, post an advertisement for your show and tag TTA! 
  • Include: 
  • Show poster jpeg 
  • Show dates 
  • How to get tickets 
  • Tag @TommyTuneAwards for it to show up on the Tommy Tune Facebook Page  
  • Tag not working? Email us and we will look into what‚Äôs going on. 
  • Print Media, AKA: TTA Playbill Ad 
  • TTA will provide schools with an ad for your Program.  
  • This is a mandatory step in the process, and schools who do not put in the ad may be ineligible to participate in the following year‚Äôs program.  
  • Ads will be shared with schools in September. 

Post-Show Required Submissions:

  • Program/Playbill 
  • Please share a PDF of your Program/Playbill in your School Microsoft Office Request File. 
  • Archival video of your entire performance  
  • It doesn‚Äôt need to be the same performance the Adjudicators attended. It can be an edited recording but must be submitted within the two-week window.  
  • You should upload a copy to your school‚Äôs Microsoft Office File Request.  
  • When do I do this?  
  • Two weeks after your show closes.  
  • Production dates in February and March will need to turn in videos within one week of closing. 
  • Cast Photo & Production Photos 
  • Please share a Full Cast Photo and at least 10 Production Photos to your school‚Äôs Google Drive TTA Folder. 
  • When do I do this? 
  • Within 1 week of show closing.

Theatre Under The Stars‚ÄĮacts as the administrative body of the Tommy Tune Awards, coordinating school and¬†adjudication¬†schedules, facilitating the scholarship award process, and producing the awards show.¬†

Here are the winners of the 2019 Tommy Tune Awards

Due to the cancellation of the 2020-21 TTAs, high school students across the Greater Houston area are invited to submit personal musical theatre videos.