Broadway star, American Idol finalist, YouTube personality and star of MTV’s Todrick made an impromptu visit to Mt. Juliet High School on Saturday.
Todrick Hall stopped by to visit, take photos and to help out with the drama department’s production of “West Side Story.” He was nearby, after all, performing his show, The Todrick Hall Experience Live at Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro.
Hall is singer, actor, director, choreographer and YouTuber. He auditioned for the ninth season of American Idol, where he made it to the semifinals. Since then, Hall has performed on Broadway, YouTube and has a documentary series on MTV called Todrick.
The theater students made a video and blew up Hall’s Twitter account, using the hash tag #bringtoddytoMJ.
“We knew he was coming to do a concert at MTSU, so we gave it a try and invited him,” said theater department sponsor Rodney Parks.
Hall, along with four of his dancers, arrived midway through Mt. Juliet’s theater practice Saturday and stayed for almost an hour.
“He tricked us,” said Taylor Clarke, a Mt. Juliet theater student, “He said that he was going to stay in his hotel room for the whole six hours before his concert at MTSU.”
Hall’s impromptu visit caught the cast, crew and Parks off guard.
”We didn’t really think he was going to come,” said Parks. “But we performed, and he gave us great feedback on our production of ‘West Side Story.’ I was so nervous…he was watching my work.”
And the reaction to Hall’s visit itself was also quite theatrical.
“I was backstage and I thought someone got hurt because everyone was screaming. When I saw him, I started crying, and everyone else was crying. We were just so happy,” said Clarke.
Parks said he appreciated Hall coming to Mt. Juliet to visit with the students, which included several hundred photo opportunities.
“Hall took time out of his schedule to visit the kids,” Parks said. “It was such a great experience. This was a great incentive for our kids to see that great things can happen. He and his staff were just outstanding. It really meant a lot to the kids, and we are very thankful.”
The Mt. Juliet High School theater department’s production of “West Side Story” will be Thursday and Friday at 7 p.m. and Saturday at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. in the school’s auditorium.