Judine Somerville Named NHS Class Of 2023 Commencement Speaker

Nantucket Current •

Judine Somerville has been named this years commencement/keynote speaker for the Nantucket High School Class of 2023. NHS principal Mandy Vasil told the Current that she met Somerville when the Accidentals and Naturals choral group made a trip to New York this spring.

Somerville is a motivational speaker and currently a Host & Adjudicator of SHOWSTOPPER America's Greatest Dance Championships. She is also a recipient of the Steven Goldberg Award, an award handed out annually to an author whose "scholarly excellence impacts education law," as well as the F. Lammot Belin Arts Scholarship, which provides financial assistance to artists of "outstanding aptitude and promise in the fine arts."

Somerville has sung the National Anthem at Yankee Stadium, The Barclay Center & Madison Square Garden. She is also a former member of The Radio City Music Hall Rockettes. Previously a Guest Artist at Lincoln Center’s Meet The Artist Series, Somerville is currently on the faculty of The Ailey School, Open Jar Institute & Rosie’s Theater Kids.

Judine Somerville

She has also made many television appearances on shows such as "The Rose Bowl Parade, “The Today Show,” “Good Morning America,” “The Early Show CBS,” “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” “Late Show with David Letterman,” “Late Night with Conan O’Brien,” “The Rosie O’Donnell Show,” “The Caroline Rhea Show,” “The VH-1 Vogue Awards,” “The Ricki Lake Show,” and PBS-TV’s “Spirit.” Somerville has also performed at The Tony Awards, The Jerry Lewis Telethon, The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, The Grammy Awards, and presented at The New York Stock Exchange.

Somerville has performed in five original Broadway musicals including the eight-time, Tony Award-winning musical Hairspray, where she was part of the singing trio sensation ‘The Dynamites’. 

Somerville was also the recipient of the historic Legacy Robe, which is awarded to the cast member who has performed in the most Broadway musicals. She also reprised her role for NBC-TV’s live presentation “HAIRSPRAYLIVE.” Directed by Kenny Leon and choreographed by Jerry Mitchell. The 2016 NBC sensation featured notable actors and actresses such as Harvey Fierstein, Martin Short, Jennifer Hudson, Kristin Chenoweth, Ariana Grande, Andrea Martin, Sean Hayes, and Rosie O’Donnell.

Somerville's other Broadway credits include On The Town, The Life, Crazy For You, and Late Nite Comic. She also received critical acclaim for her performances as ‘Rita White’ in the world premiere of the musical Me & Mrs. Jones starring Lou Rawls, and as ‘Helene’ in Sweet Charity, starring Donna McKechnie. Her National Tours include Barry Manilow’s Copacabana with Gavin MacLeod, and Jekyll & Hyde starring Chuck Wagner.

Somerville is also a Trustee on the Board of the Mary McDowell Friends School, the Gateway School, and Rosie's Theater Kids.

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