Stars of Broadway's 'The Prom' share heartwarming stories of show's impact

The show, nominated for seven Tony awards, tells the story of a young lesbian woman in high school, facing backlash and hate for bringing girlfriend to prom.
6:32 | 06/05/19

Coming up in the next {{countdown}} {{countdownlbl}}

Coming up next:

{{nextVideo.title}}

{{nextVideo.description}}

Skip to this video now

Now Playing:

{{currentVideo.title}}

Comments
Related Extras
Related Videos
Video Transcript
Transcript for Stars of Broadway's 'The Prom' share heartwarming stories of show's impact
Reporter: On its face, Broadway's new show "The prom" has all the high kicks and jazz hands you'd expect from a musical comedy. Only amid all the twirls there's an unexpected twist in a show now nominated for seven Tony awards. We thought this was a frothy comedy with maybe a little political message, but it's turned into such an overwhelming thing for these kids that really need some courage. I just want to dance with you Reporter: At the heart of it all, a fictional story about a girl named Emma, a high school lesbian whose prom is canceled because she wants to bring her girlfriend as a date and is faced with backlash and hate. Reporter: Your character's story is one that so many young people deal with every day in real life. Yes. Reporter: How do you put yourself into their shoes? ? She is based on real individuals and real people who have gone through this. It's incredible for so many reasons that this story is being told, because kids still go through this every day. They're being expelled. They're being hated and shunned in their communities every single year. And that's insane to me. Reporter: It's an all-too-familiar story line, a tale of discrimination faced by gay couples trying to carry out the school tradition of going to the prom but a same-sex date. That's like reading articles of gay teens unable to go to their proms and it feels wrong. Reporter: Chad beglund wrote the lyrics. Tell us about your experience going to the prom, if I can put you on the spot. I would never in a million years even consider taking a guy to the prom. That was unthinkable. I know what it's like to be bullied because you're gay and the fear of walking down those hallways. Reporter: Were you out in high school? No. No. I was, again, talk about fear. And so that's, that's sort of the wonderful thing I think about this show, because I wasn't as brave as the characters are in the show. Reporter: They say quite often the audience members aren't just looking for signatures but wanting or in some cases needing to say thank you and share their own personal stories that play out far from the bright lights of Broadway. There was a young girl, probably high school aged girl who she said my mother's standing behind me, and she doesn't know that I'm lesbian but I just want to say thank you. And her eyes were filled with tears and it took my breath away. Reporter: As actors, we feel the transformative power of this story in an audience. Yes. Reporter: The Macy's day parade, while more than 23 million viewers watched the cast closed out the performance with the first same-sex kiss in the parade's history. While many lauded the move, others pounced. Conservative group for America tweeted millions of small children just watched two girls kiss and had their innocence broken this morning. But Macy's stood by the decision, a representative releasing this statement. At Macy's, we are guided by our corporate values of acceptance, respect, integrity and giving back. Was the kiss very deliberate to get a reaction out of sneak people? As a kid watching it, that is huge. I knew it was going to change people's lives. Reporter: Now as we find ourselves in the midst of prom season and pride month, it is visible at some schools. In March, a Mississippi high school made waves after mandating that students and parents sign paperwork ensuring that their prom date would be of the opposite sex. It's offensive to us. Reporter: In 2013, this Indiana group of parents and teacher fought for a separate, traditional prom. What the bible says, it is wrong. We love the homosexuals, but we do not condone what they're doing. Reporter: For so many high school girls, prom is what dreams are made of. And Nicole and her girlfriend Olivia are no exception. Prom was so much more than I expected. And just being able to be completely open with her as my girlfriend, dancing with her, kissing her. I think our friends and our community and our school supporting us, showing us so much love was crazier than we ever expected it to be. Reporter: In their west Chester community, a suburb outside Philadelphia they both wanted to be joint prom queens and dance with each other, something that wasn't allowed. In the beginning of the year I was looking at different scholarships and I came across do something.org and I saw take back the prom. Reporter: They created the campaign to highlight discrimination and get students involved. Nicole shared her story and she and Olivia met with their principal and got the rules changed. Trying to create change was a little scary. We want to make our school more Progressive. Reporter: The girls got nominated to the prom court. But for all the fun they had both agree that prom is much more than just a school dance. I think prom is such an experience in a teenager's life. It's like a social and political event. There are a lot of people who had experiences with prom so they don't feel they can be who they are because they're afraid of how someone else is going to react to be that. Reporter: They say they are thrilled to be heard and seen a stage as impactful as Broadway. When I heard there was a musical about a lesbian couple going to prom I was super excited. It is a national issue. No matter what town or community you live in, the problem is there. Reporter: Changing hearts and minds sntsd often the hope of a Broadway show. Before I met you Reporter: The one goal here is that beyond the toe-tapping memorable melodies the entertainment might just also inspire. I hope people come see the show and maybe rethink how they treated somebody and just be a little more accepting and understanding and just listen. Listen to people who aren't exactly like you. Reporter: For "Nightline," linsey Davis in New York.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

{"duration":"6:32","description":"The show, nominated for seven Tony awards, tells the story of a young lesbian woman in high school, facing backlash and hate for bringing girlfriend to prom.","mediaType":"default","section":"ABCNews/Nightline","id":"63496580","title":"Stars of Broadway's 'The Prom' share heartwarming stories of show's impact","url":"/Nightline/video/stars-broadways-prom-share-heartwarming-stories-shows-impact-63496580"}