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High School Musical was a phenomenon when it debuted as a TV movie back in 2006, and the franchise ran for one more TV movie and a theatrical release before the Zac Efron/Vanessa Hudgens class of Wildcats graduated from East High. A fourth movie never happened, and attempts at a TV show stalled... until now. Disney+ is bringing a show called High School Musical: The Musical: The Series -- yes, really -- to streaming to reach a whole new generation and tap into some nostalgia for older subscribers, and now there's a way to check out the premiere before Disney+ even launches.
The premiere of High School Musical: The Musical: The Series will air on Friday, November 8 at 8 p.m. ET on not one but three channels, which is several days before Disney+ goes live on Tuesday, November 12. So, where can you watch the first episode? ABC, Disney Channel, and Freeform will air it simultaneously on November 8.
That the first episode of the High School Musical show will air on ABC, Disney Channel, and Freeform can be taken as a sign that it's probably pretty appropriate for most ages. It may not be hitting Disney XD, but anything that airs on Disney Channel isn't going to be super risqué. So, what will the show be about?
Fans of the original movies shouldn't expect to see Troy, Gabriella and Co. back in East High for High School Musical: The Musical: The Series, but the musical action will go down at East High and be pretty familiar. The season will run for ten episodes, set at the very same Utah high school where High School Musical was filmed for its 2006 release on Disney Channel.
Throughout the ten episodes, the teens will go from auditions to opening night of -- what else? -- the school's first production of High School Musical: The Musical. There will be romances starting to bloom, friendships threatening to fall apart, and rivalries that will inevitably be compared to Sharpay/Ryan vs. Troy/Gabriella. The kids will go through a process unique to coming of age in high school theater.
The series stars Joshua Bassett as charismatic teen Ricky who wants to win back his ex Nini, Nini herself (Olivia Rodrigo) after her return from summer theater camp with a new boyfriend but familiar insecurities, drama teacher Miss Jenn (Kate Reinders), secretive transfer student and theater kid Gina (Sofia Wylie), Nini's competitive new camp boyfriend E.J. (Matt Cornett), Nini's fashionista and feminist best friend Kourtney (Dara Reneé), aspiring songwriter Ashlyn (Julia Lester), student choreographer Carlos (Frankie A. Rodriguez), Rick's best bud Big Red (Larry Saperstein) who is basically a "spiritual descendant of Bill and Ted," and by-the-book S.T.E.M. teacher Mr. Mazzara (Mark St. Cyr).
For a blast from the High School Musical past, sneak peek at how the new series is honoring the original, and the hint of some potential HSM cameos, check out a nostalgia featurette:
To see High School Musical: The Musical: The Series' first episode early, check out ABC, Disney Channel, or Freeform on Friday, November 8 at 8 p.m. If you'd rather wait until the series' official launch and can't catch the Friday broadcast, you can find the series premiere streaming on Disney+ when it launches on Tuesday, November 12.
High School Musical: The Musical: The Series looks like it should be one of the more kid-friendly series available at launch, as the trailer for The Mandalorian indicates that maybe the youngsters should stick with singing and dancing more than live-action Star Wars action for the time being. If streaming isn't always your style, check out our 2019 fall TV premiere schedule.