A Disney musical special is coming to TVs on Thursday, April 16, and on top of an already star-studded cast, East High will be represented on the show in a big way. They're a perfect addition to the show, since you know, they've got quite a bit of experience in the singing department. So, get ready to reminisce on the good ol' days and belt out "We're All In This Together," because Zac Efron and the High School Musical cast are reuniting for the virtual singalong.
Deadline announced The Disney Family Singalong on April 10. It will be hosted by none other than Ryan Seacrest and feature beloved celebs from all over the entertainment world (and their families) as they sing iconic Disney songs. An animated character will guide the on-screen lyrics, so fans can join in on the fun too. The special will feature songs from all over the Disney universe, including from hit movies Beauty and the Beast, Moana, Frozen, and (you guessed it) High School Musical. It will also air PSAs to raise awareness about the national food-bank organization Feeding America, which has resources for people who might be facing hunger due to the coronavirus.
On April 13, Deadline announced the original High School Musical cast would take part in the special. According to the report, HSM director Kenny Ortega rounded up Vanessa Hudgens, Ashley Tisdale, Corbin Bleu, Monique Coleman, and Lucas Grabeel, who agreed to sing an epic remake of the hit "We're All In This Together." They'll be joined in the performance by other stars including Raven-Symoné, Charli and Dixie D'Amelio, as well as cast members of Descendants and ˆHigh School Musical: The Musical: The Series.
Efron was a later addition to the special, so he probably won't sing with the rest of the HSM cast, but instead is set to provide a short message during the special. "We couldn’t reach Zac until late but when we did, he immediately jumped in, of course,” Ortega told Deadline, adding: “Everyone we reached out to was quick — and you’ll see it in their spirit and the way they come together from their homes. They recognize this is an opportunity to strengthen spirits for those joining us for the broadcast.”
"We're All In This Together" feels like the perfect song to perform during this time of uncertainty brought on by the coronavirus pandemic. Ortega said he's seen the phrase used all over social media to encourage positivity and solidarity. "I’ve been sent videos from doctors, orderlies, nurses and medical professionals in masks and hospital gowns singing 'We’re All In This Together' in the hallways of hospitals.” he told Deadline.
Ortega said the resurgence in popularity of the iconic HSM song can be partially credited to Tisdale, who posted a TikTok of herself doing the choreography from the movie in March. “If you need to work out while on #selfquarantine try this 😂 hopefully this will brighten your day a little!” she captioned the video. Since then, many have taken to TikTok to recreate her performance.
The announcement comes just days after Hudgens posted a photo of a Zoom reunion with her fellow High School Musical stars on April 11. It wasn't clear why they were getting together then, but now it all makes sense.
In addition to the HSM cast, other stars performing in the Disney special include Ariana Grande, Demi Lovato, John Stamos, Christina Aguilera, Elle Fanning, Darren Criss, and more.
The Disney Family Singalong will air on Thursday, April 16, at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.