Friday, December 19, 2008

MTV to showcase SCPA

By John Kiesewetter • • December 17, 2008

MTV's newest stars are attending Cincinnati's School for Creative & Performing Arts.


The cable network Tuesday approved Nick Lachey's proposal to make a TV series at his alma mater. He shot two pilots here, in March and this fall.

"We're very excited. This will be a great opportunity to showcase our great programs and our great students," said Isidore Rudnick, SCPA artistic director.

MTV said the "untitled performing arts reality project" will show "some of the most talented teenagers in the nation as they balance the enormous pressures of pursuing their dreams while navigating their way through ... high school."

The series will air next year likely as one-hour dramas, a spokesperson said. The number of episodes has not been determined.

Producers are focusing on about 10 students at the Over-the-Rhine school, Rudnick said in October. Main story lines will include a ballerina, hip-hop dancer and a potential Broadway performer.

MTV crews have been filming on and off since August in classes, at lunch, and before and after school. Cameras have captured "the ups and down, the adulation and tears, and that moment when (students) risked it all."

Lachey, 35, who starred in MTV's "Newlyweds" reality series, secured permission for the project last December from SCPA and Cincinnati Public Schools. A pilot shot in March was redone because too many students in the show graduated in June, Lachey said in July.

The schools will be paid $10,000 for the pilot, and $10,000 for each episode, according to MTV's contract with the district.