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NBC 7 San Diego
Students practice on the stage at Escondido High School.
A North County High school is one of 30 across the country chosen as a finalist in NBC's "Smash Make a Musical” contest.
Five schools will each receive a $3000 gift certificate to Lowe’s for theater renovations.
Escondido High School was among 30 finalists in the contest and the students need the public’s vote to win the funds needed to renovate their school theater.
The school principal tells NBC 7, the rundown building was a cafeteria before it burned down in the late 80's.
Angela Arnett, the director of the Escondido HS Drama Dept. said the school’s theater has a lot of potential.
However, she said it’s been about 20 years since any work has been done and repairs are sorely needed.
"The lighting tends to be very finicky In the middle of the show, randomly the breakers will blow, the lights will turn on by themselves so we have our own little Poltergeist,” Arnett said.
Eleven students participate in the Stage Craft Class and work on repairs as best they can.
“They keep working no matter what happens,” Arnett said.
A safer stage and new sound equipment are also high on the priority list according to said Stage Manager/Head of Light Design Clare Borden.
"The chance to be able to redo this would be amazing for our department,” Borden said. “So please help!"
“We’re the underdogs,” Arnett said. “We need to get a lot more votes.”
The deadline to vote is April 10 at midnight.
Last season, “NBC’s ‘Smash’: Make a Musical” created musical theater programs in schools by giving educators and students the tools and training they needed to build self-sustaining programs in under-served schools.