Opinion | ‘High School Musical’ still bears relevance


Photo Courtesy of IMDB

Olesya Rulin, Vanessa Hudgens and Zac Efron star in “High School Musical.” Columnist Noah believes the film is still relevant today.

By Noah Nelson, Senior Columnist

On Jan. 20, 2006, Disney Channel introduced the world to a little film titled “High School Musical.” Little did anyone know that this 98-minute film would turn into its own franchise followed by two sequels, a sold-out arena tour, merchandise and countless lifelong fans. Though the first film was released 14 years ago, the stories and lessons from all three films are still relevant today.

For those who have never seen or heard of these films, the story follows high school basketball star Troy Bolton (Zac Efron) who meets chemistry genius Gabriella Montez (Vanessa Hudgens) after singing with her unexpectedly at a New Year’s Eve party. When Troy soon learns that Gabriella has transferred to East High School, they find that singing might just be their hidden talent.

As they audition for the spring musical, they soon meet drama club addicts, twins Sharpay (Ashley Tisdale) and Ryan Evans (Lucas Grabeel) who are not too fond of Troy and Gabriella making the callbacks. Soon, the latter two deal with their new singing ventures while being persuaded by their friends Chad (Corbin Blue) and Taylor (Monique Coleman) to stick to the clubs they know best.

In the upbeat jam “Stick to the Status Quo,” viewers learn that some basketball players like to bake, nerds like to dance and skaters like to play cello. Everything changes as students break away from their normal status quo, and show the world who they really are and what they can do besides their known talents.

In the years the films were released, they were a phenomenon. The cast sort of were like the Beatles, appearing everywhere from talk shows, commercials and other projects. The films took the world by storm, at least it did for the children who grew up watching them, who are now most likely in high school or college. The lessons these films teach are much like the college experience.

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Here at the University, everyone majors in whatever field they enjoy and hope to work in for a lifelong career. Even so, many students change their major. They try out for several clubs to test the waters of their interests. Like the “High School Musical” movies, college is all about finding your way in life and doing what you love to do.

The films teach everyone that no matter what anyone says, if you want to do something, do it. No one should stop you. You have to find your passion in life in order to live a great one. There may be some bumps in the road, but in the end, it will all be worth it.

Time and time again, “High School Musical” is brought up in conversation in one way or another. And why shouldn’t it be? Whether anyone knew it or not, the films teach these valuable life lessons with the added bonus of catchy songs and dances to match.

So join the club that interests you. Do the hobbies you’ve always wanted to do. In the process, always be yourself, and never stick to the status quo.

While doing so, accept others for who they are, too, because we all have to live with one another for a long time in this world. Never give up. Keep your head held high. And remember to embrace those around you because at the end of the day, we’re all in this together.

Noah is a junior in the College of Media.

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