Recent William Horlick High School grad Taylor Stefanski is hitting all the right notes this summer in Kids from Wisconsin while she prepares to attend the University of Alabama-Birmingham’s prestigious fine arts program this fall.

She will be in Racine Saturday for the Kids’ first performance of the summer at the Racine Zoo. The show starts at 6:30 p.m., and tickets are $10 each.

We first profiled Taylor last summer when she was first accepted into the Kids, and her mom, Lori, contacted us last week to give us an update on Taylor’s journey:

  • Participated in the National Performing Arts Festival  at Walt Disney World in Orlando, FL, with the Horlick Theater Arts group
  • Competed as a soloist at the festival and won the top honors out of 110 soloists from across the country, winning the chance to perform at Walt Disney World
  • She was Titania in A Midsummers Night Dream, the Blue Fairy in Pinocchio, and a lead in Godspell at Horlick
  • Played Hodel in The Fiddler on the Roof with The Racine Theater Guild
  • Attended the National Unified College Auditions in Chicago where she auditioned for 16 schools in three days. She was accepted into 18 colleges, eight musical theater programs and two acting programs.
  • Awarded The Perkins Family Scholarship and the Rotary Club-Dennis Barry Strive Scholarship

UA-B might seem like an odd choice for a young woman who has dreams of making her way to Broadway. With fewer than 50 students currently enrolled in the fine arts program, Taylor’s mom, Lori, said her daughter will be more than just a number, and that was one of the factors that made Taylor choose UA-B.

“It really came down to whether or not Taylor wanted to go to a big name performing arts school or if she was more interested in a smaller campus with more individualized attention,” Lori explained.

A visit to Alabama ultimately convinced Taylor that’s where the road to her future would truly begin.

“I hope to hone my skills and gain the new skills I’ll need to be a professional actress,” Taylor said during a phone interview between Kids rehearsals. “I expect to go to Broadway and hope that’s what I do for the rest of my life. The University of Alabama-Birmingham will teach me what I need to do that.”

Lori is understandably proud.

“I’m so excited for her, and of course I will miss her,” she said. “But Taylor is going to be doing what she loves, and her summer travels with Kids has helped with the transition.”

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