The Thirteenth Annual Cappies Gala took place on June 10 in the Concert Hall at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.  The gala was attended by more than 2400 students, teachers, families, and friends.

Performers critics, and tech crews from 58 high schools in Northern Virginia, Maryland, and Washington, D.C., received 40 prestigious Cappie awards, in a glamorous atmosphere that Cappies (Critics and Awards Program) co-founder and Capitol Steps co-founder, Bill Strauss, used to call “part Tonys, part Final Four.” 

Casts of nominated shows and the performers of nominated songs presented musical numbers as well as scenes from the nominated plays. The entire show will be aired on Cox Cable “Red Apple” Channel 21 beginning the week of July 2 and continue throughout the summer.

Throughout the year, the Cappies program is driven by hundreds of area high school theater student critics who attend each others’ shows, write reviews for newspapers and TV, and serve as Cappies awards judges. Over the past 12 years, more than 2000 student-written Cappies reviews have been published by The Washington Post and more than a dozen other area newspapers in both hard copy and online.

On May 13, student critics voted for Cappie awards, through a digital, student-designed voting process.  The winners in each category are listed on a separate sheet.

Launched in Northern Virginia in 1999, Cappies programs are now underway in 17 American cities, including Cincinnati, Dallas, Orlando, Kansas City, and three chapters in Canada. 

Bill Strauss, who died in 2007, always said, “High School Theater is the real youth culture in America, and someday, these kids are going to revitalize Broadway.  They’re the next great theater generation.”


OR:Judy Bowns, Cappies Co-founder/Director, Fairfax County Public Schools,  or 571.423.4544

OR:Andrea (Andy) Mays, Cappies Program Manager,  (You may also request photos from Andy Mays for any of the winning shows.)