The East High Wildcats are back on Disney + for a brand-new semester, and it looks like we’re about to get about to get a whole new dose of teen drama. High School Musical: The Musical: The Series is coming back for its sophomore season, and judging from all the sneak peeks the show has been dropping as of late, there’s a lot for us fans to unpack.
Let’s give a little run down on what’s going on with our fave students post-season 1. After a successful performance of High School Musical, the drama club is back and ready to perform another Disney favorite: Beauty and the Beast. Miss Jenn (aka our drama advisor extraordinaire) wants to enter her students into a prestigious theater competition … until she realizes one of the clubs they’re going up against is run by none other than her ex. Oy vey. And then there’s all this Ricky / Nini drama, as they are finally trying to work out their relationship — that is, until Nini gets into a prestigious musical theater program and just has to take the opportunity, because it’s Nini and she wants to achieve her. dreams so badly.
We can’t just give you all the deets (even though we desperately want to!), But we did think it would be good to give fans a clue into the cast this season. Yes, you might know and even love some of the cast. But there are some fresh faces who are about to cause a stir at East High.
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1 The trailer, in case you’re in need …
2 Olivia Rodrigo
Portrays: Nini, a musical theater aficionado who played Gabriella Montez in last semester’s production of High School Musical.
Fun fact: Um, if you haven’t listened to Olivia’s hit single “Driver’s License” —or heard about her drama with Joshua Bassett — stop reading this and put the song on BLAST.
READ MORE: Who is Olivia Rodrigo?
3 Joshua Bassett
Portrays: Ricky, the skateboard enthusiast who has some past relationship issues with Nini. I have played Troy Bolton in the play last semester, despite initially not having any interest.
Fun fact: He’s not just at the center of drama with Olivia Rodrigo … Josh also has a tune or two out about relationships (we can’t confirm if they’re about his co-star though).
READ MORE: Who is Joshua Bassett?
4 Dara Reneé
Portrays: Kourtney, Nini’s best friend who works in the costume department.
Fun fact: Although relatively new to Hollywood, Dara is already a familiar face with Disney viewers. She starred in the 2018 Disney Channel film Freaky Friday (not to mix up the iconic 2003 remake with Lindsay Lohan).
5 Sofia Wylie
Portrays: Gina, a transfer student to East High who dreams of becoming a theater actress. She portrayed Taylor McKessie in East High’s production of High School Musical.
Fun fact: Yet another former Disney Channel star is in our midst. Aside from HSM: TM: TS, Sofia is best known for portraying Buffy Driscoll on Andi Mack.
6 Matt Cornett
Portrays: EJ, a jock and Nini’s ex-boyfriend. I have played Chad Danforth in last semester’s play.
Fun fact: He’s an animal lover. Matt loves to cuddle with his dog Kota, and his IG definitely is a good place to find photos of the duo. Tell me that isn’t adorable!
7 Julia Lester
Portrays: Ashlyn, EJ’s cousin who wants to become a songwriter. She played Miss Darbus in last semester’s play.
Fun fact: She comes from a long line of industry folks. Julia’s father is a voice-over actor, her grandfather was an actor for over four decades, and her uncle composes music for various movies and TV shows.
8 Larry Saperstein
Portrays: Big Red, Ricky’s best friend and occasional stage manager whenever needed.
Age: 2. 3
Fun fact: He’s actually really close friends with fellow co-star Andrew Barth Feldman, who will make his debut on the show this season.
9 Mark St. Cyr
Portrays: Mr. Mazzara, the STEM teacher at East High who ain’t so happy with the school’s focus on the arts.
Fun fact: Aside from acting credits in roles like Kevin Can Wait and Chicago PD, he starred opposite Chadwick Boseman and Sterling K. Brown in the critically-acclaimed 2017 film Marshall.
10 Joe Serafini
Portrays: Seb, a student at East High who’s dating Carlos. He was cast as Sharpay Evans in last semester’s production of High School Musical.
Age: 2. 3
Fun fact: Hello, college grad, Joe recently graduated from the University of Michigan, where he majored in musical theater.
11 Frankie A. Rodriguez
Portrays: Carlos, an East High student and the choreographer for the drama club.
Fun fact: Um, there’s a chance he’s dating onscreen boyfriend Joe Serafini in real life … can we use Insta as a means of evidence?
12 Kate Reinders
Portrays: Miss Jenn, the drama teacher at East High who supposedly appeared in the original movie.
Fun fact: It makes sense Kate is portraying the theater advisor on the show — she has a ton of Broadway credits under her name. She’s starred in musicals such as Wicked (she played Glinda), Beautiful: The Carole King Musical, and she even is part of a singing / songwriting comedy duo.
13 Andrew Barth Feldman
Portrays: Antoine, a French foreign exchange student at North High who immediately catches feelings for Ashlyn and loves flirting with her.
Fun fact: Not only is he famous for making his Broadway debut in Dear Evan Hansen (he portrayed the titular role!), But he’s about to get a whole lot smarter when he attends Harvard in the fall. Oh, and he founded a theater production company when he was just 12.
14 Asher Angel
Portrays: Jack, a high school student who’s charming and has a head full of dreams.
Fun fact: Aside from his other famous roles (he was in Andi Mack and the DC Universe movie Shazam!), He’s also a talented singer. I have released a single in 2019, “One Thought Away,” featuring none other than rapper Wiz Khalifa.
15 Derek Hough
Portrays: Zack, Miss Jenn’s ex-boyfriend who, after a successful acting stint in New York City, becomes the newest drama teacher at North High.
Fun fact: The dancing pro is not only a two-time Emmy Award winner for his time on Dancing With the Stars (he even has six Mirror Ball trophies under his belt!), But he also was an extra in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. Don’t believe us? Check it out here.
16 Roman Banks
Portrays: Howie, a slightly nerdy yet also extremely snarky junior at East High who works at Salt Lake Slices.
Fun fact: Another Broadway alum on the roster: Like fellow co-star Andrew Barth Feldman, Roman was recently an understudy in Dear Evan Hansen. He even made theater history in December 2019 when he appeared as the first African-American Evan Hansen!
17 Olivia Rose Keegan
Portrays: Lily, a new East High student whose competitive side is extremely well-hidden under her sweet exterior.
Fun fact: Disney fans may not know her, but Days of Our Lives fans sure do. She’s been playing Claire Brady on the long-time soap opera, and recently received a Daytime Emmy for it.
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