When Caroline Dill first saw The Lion King on Broadway, she knew the stage is where she wanted to be.
She’s one step closer, as the Conway Christian School sophomore was recently chosen to participated in the 2020 High School Honors Performance Series at Carnegie Hall in New York City at the end of January.
She will join performers from all over the world for five days to learn from world-renowned conductors, work with other finalists and perform with them in Honors Choirs, and get a taste of the Big Apple.
The Honors Performance Series is presented by WorldStrides, an educational travel organization.
Dill was nominated by her CCS music teacher, Kimberly Hurley, and auditioned back in May. She has been waiting ever since to hear whether or not she was chosen.
Her family finally got the good news about two weeks ago.
“I honestly didn’t believe what I was reading, I had to read it again,” Dill said.
A press release from the Honors Performance Series said that participation in one of the five ensembles is limited to the highest-rated high school performers “from across the world.”
“Acceptance to the elite group is a direct result of the talent, dedication, and achievements demonstrated in [Dill’s] application and audition recording,” the release said.
She has been involved in music as long as her mother Missy Dill can remember.
“She would sing everywhere,” Mrs. Dill said.
Caroline said that her mother always had to call her out about singing loudly.
“Mom always said I could sing before I could speak,” Dill said with a smile. “She would say constantly, ‘Caroline, we are in public.”
Dill has been taking voice lessons from Janet Inman Haigh for eight years, as well as piano lessons for nine years with Robin Simmons.
She said her dream is to one day perform on Broadway.
In addition to performing in the world-famous venue, she will get to see a Broadway show during her trip to Carnegie Hall, have a celebration cruise on a private yacht with the other finalists, as well as visit some famous New York City landmarks.
In order to help her get to Carnegie Hall, a fundraiser has been set up for next Friday, Nov. 15 at Radd Dew’s Bar-B-Que on Horry Road from 4 p.m. – 9 p.m. Mrs. Dill said that all the tips that evening will go towards helping Caroline cover her trip expenses for this musical opportunity.
Caroline will be singing throughout the evening, and she and some of her friends volunteered to help refill drinks, pick up trash and wait tables as needed.
Hurley beamed with pride as she complimented Caroline on the accomplishment.
“They contacted me to nominate someone and Caroline was the first one that came to mind. She more than deserves this. Her heart and passion is music,” Hurley said.