Next time those Idol judges dismiss some performance as "too Broadway," point 'em to Broadway or Bust.
Coming in September, the three-part series follows 60 high school students - drawn from an audition pool of 50,000 - competing in The National High School Musical Awards, known as "The Jimmys." The kids learn dance routines, solos and song medleys in a New York boot camp, all leading up to a one-night show on the Broadway stage that usually houses The Lion King.
"How many kids from our age group get to say that they have debuted on Broadway?" says Joshua Grosso. "It was a surreal moment."
Though Broadway will put them on TV, Mason Alexander says TV helped put him on the road to Broadway. Watching Glee, he says, inspired him to get out of his small North Carolina town, where he was being bullied far worse than Kurt is on the Fox show.
"Glee is one of the reasons I moved to California," he says. "I wanted to get away from an environment where I couldn't express my art ... or do musical theater without getting beat up at school."
Of course, despite their belief that they have the passion and talent needed to make it on Broadway, the contestants are just children. What they want may change, and what they get may not be what they want. But Brittany Dankwa says nothing will make her stop.
"You can tell me no as many times as you want, you can tell me to shut up as many times as you want. But I'm going to keep going."