This edition of Alumni Spotlight will focus on Alumni Lisa Howard. Lisa was a long time member of ETC, graduating in 1993 from Firestone High School. She was a mainstay in ETC shows, getting multiple solos and consistently winning Best Female Soloist at competitions and festivals. While in ETC everyone could see that her talent was immense, but ETC was just the beginning of a very successful performing career.
After leaving ETC, Lisa went on to attend the University of Cincinnati at the prestigious Conservatory of Music. There she majored in musical theater. She graduated from the university in 1997 with her BFA in Musical Theater.
After college Lisa went on to work and perform at various prominent regional theaters across the country including the St. Louis MUNY, Kansas City Starlight, The Olney Center, Goodspeed Opera House, Pittsburg Civic Light Opera and Barrington Stage Company.
Her first big break came when she was cast to be in the ensemble for the Third National Les Misérables touring show. She then went on to land her first Broadway role in 2005 when she was a part of the original cast of the musical the 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee where she played the role of Rona Lisa Peretti.
After a successful run with the 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Lisa landed the role of Lt. Genevieve Marshall/Ensemble in the Broadway show South Pacific in 2008. In 2009 Lisa then got a role as Missy/ensemble in the original Broadway run of the musical 9 to 5. In 2011 she got a role in the ensemble with Priscilla, Queen of the Desert made its way to Broadway.
Lisa broke through to the big screen in 2012, where she was cast a Siobhan, a member of an Irish Coven, in the last film Breaking Dawn – Part 2 of the smash film serious The Twilight Saga.
After Twilight and Priscilla, Queen of the Desert, Lisa received another large role on Broadway, originating the role of Jenny Steinberg in the original Broadway production of It Shoulda Been You. For her performance as Jenny, Lisa received the 2015 Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Actress in a Musical. She then had the honor of performing on stage at the 69th Annual Tony Awards in 2015. This was a great thrill for Lisa and Playbill Online named the performance of Jenny’s Blues as one of the greatest moments from that year’s Tony awards. Rolling Stone also called her performance one of the ceremony’s best moments.
In 2016 Lisa returned to the University of Cincinnati’s Conservatory of Music and received CCM’s Musical Theatre Young Alumni Award. This award is given to graduates of the past two decades for outstanding professional achievement.
Lisa will be continuing her successful Broadway career this March (2018), as she will be originating the role of Tammy in the new musical Escape to Margaritaville, which will feature music and lyrics by the famous singer Jimmy Buffet.
Lisa was and is one of the most successful graduates of ETC. We have loved seeing her career develop over the years and cannot wait to see what else is in store for this immensely talented Woman!
Go to Lisa’s website here:
Watch her amazing performance at the 69th Tony Awards here: