High School Musical: The Series Renewed For Season 4 Ahead Of Season 3 With Big Change For Olivia Rodrigo And Other Fan-Favorite Regulars

Olivia Rodrigo as Nini with Ukelele in High School Musical series
(Image credit: Disney+)

High School Musical: The Musical: The Series is returning in just a couple months, but ahead of catching back up with East High, Disney+ has already ordered a fourth season. Just don’t expect Olivia Rodrigo’s Nini to be the star of the series any longer. 

Disney+ announced that the High School Musical series will not only return this summer for Season 3, but an upcoming fourth season following it. However, Olivia Rodrigo is now listed among the “guest stars” in the cast and she’s not alone. Kate Reinders’ Miss Jenn, Larry Saperstein’s Big Red, and Joe Serafini’s Seb are also listed as guests on the upcoming season rather than being counted among the “stars” including Joshua Bassett, Sofia Wylie, Matt Cornett, Julia Lester, Dara Reneé, Frankie Rodriguez, Saylor Bell Curda, and Adrian Lyles. 

Olivia Rodrigo has become one of the biggest new names in pop music between hits like “Good 4 U” and her recent Disney+ special. Her big break began on the High School Musical series back in 2019, and she even wrote original songs for the episodes. Her album Sour was released in spring of last year and remains among the most streamed albums worldwide on Spotify. Rodrigo is currently on her first tour, which will enter its European leg next month. With that in mind, it’s understandable that her schedule has shifted and she may not be able to film alongside her cast members, but why is more of the cast also scaling back their roles as well? 

What’s even more perplexing is there is also a section in the Disney+ release for “recurring guest stars,” which Aria Brooks, Liamani Segura, and Ben Stillwell find themselves on. It seems that Rodrigo, Saperstein, Serafini, and Reinders will have limited roles in the High School Musical series, and might only show up for a single episode in the upcoming Season 3. 

The third season will be set at a sleepaway camp in California, so that right there gives the series room to write out cast members by establishing that their characters couldn’t go to camp or have other pursuits for their summer vacations. Notably, the High School Musical series will feature original High School Musical cast member Corbin Bleu as himself. Can we get Zac Efron on too now that he said he’s interested in returning to the franchise, too? 

It looks like Joshua Bassett’s Ricky will remain the series’ big star, with Sofia Wylie’s Gina continuing to be a major character as well. Along with Rodrigo being pretty much out of the picture, it is curious to see Saperstein, who is Ricky’s best friend and boyfriend to Lester’s Ashlyn, along with Serafini’s Seb moving to the side after he and Frankie Rodriguez had a historic LGBTQ+ moment in the series as well. 

High School Musical: The Musical: The Series Season 3 will premiere on July 27, with new episodes dropping weekly on Wednesdays with a Disney+ subscription

Sarah El-Mahmoud
Staff Writer

YA genre tribute. Horror May Queen. Word webslinger. All her writing should be read in Sarah Connor’s Terminator 2 voice over.