By Lorena Grajales, Editor-in-Chief-
UTC students took a trip down memory lane alongside KayCee Stroh, an American actress, dancer and singer mostly known for her character as Martha Cox, in the High School Musical series on Disney Channel.
As Jan. 20 marked the fifteenth anniversary of the original HSM film, students were invited to spend the evening answering through six rounds of Disney Trivia questions, which included movies and characters, live action movies, location and general knowledge, among others.
Coordinator for Student Engagement Taylor Asgard said Stroh was well-suited to host the Kahoot game, because of the importance of her role and her ongoing influence on social media.
“KayCee Stroh has the distinction of being both a nostalgic figure to students from High School Musical, as well as current figure due to her TikTok presence. We have done Disney trivia before at UTC, so it seemed like a natural fit for KayCee to host Disney Trivia for us.”
UTC junior and Event Manager Rachel Powers shared what unique factor was brought into this event and what her experience was like with the star.
“I think this event is different because this is the first time, we have ever hosted an event like this at UTC. It wasn’t just a regular trivia, we brought in a famous actress, singer and dancer that everyone knew and loved!” Powers continued, “…I was a little nervous going into the night because I had never hosted something like this before and I was meeting one of my favorite childhood stars.”
Throughout the night, Stroh shared a few inside stories with students including her audition process for the “small untitled Disney project”, straight out of knee surgery as a nineteen-year-old.
“I auditioned to be a backup dancer…After I danced, Kenny [the director] stood up and walked over to me…and he said, ‘I love you, you’re different’…tears started filling my eyes,” she said. “I was one of 500 dancers who showed up that day.”
Stroh also shared the inside scoop of what it was like to work with other well-known celebrities in the film and music industry such as Miley Cyrus, Zac Efron and the Sprouse twins.
“They blew my mind, I have to tell you…They were so professional, so smart. They knew what time they needed to end, they’d go to school, and I mean, just these brilliant boys [the Sprouse twins.] And so that was a really cool experience,” Stroh shared.
Towards the end of the night, the top three winners out of almost 90 students were awarded a screenshot picture with Stroh, along with school supplies and UTC items to kick-off Spring 2021.
“I’m very proud of you Wildcats, you didn’t let me down,” said Stroh to the proud UTC Mocs.
Post baccalaureate student and first-place winner of the Disney Trivia, Dustin Crane expressed his gratitude for the opportunity of a laid-back night with his family, amid another turbulent Covid-19-affected semester.
“It was a great kickoff to a semester that may see a lot of zoom classes…It offered something exciting and different for what has become some pretty boring, near home-bound schedules,” Crane said. “It was really neat to have a celebrity on and Kaycee was really great and interactive…The questions and stories they prompted were really fun and interesting, especially for my kids since we all watched the High School Musical Trilogy over the last year on Disney+” he added.
To recap on the event, Powers mentioned what she hoped the Trivia Night had offered students.
“I hope students remember this event as an easy going and fun event. Starting a new semester is hard but it is okay to step away and take a fun break.”
Students are advised to voice their opinions for what type of programs and events they would like to see held this semester, at the student programming survey found here.