DEcKHED: Ellie Palacios becomes Young Master recipient


Staff Writer


HARLINGEN — For Ellie Palacios, 15, Broadway is the ultimate dream, and now the opportunity for it to come true seems closer.

Palacios, a Harlingen High School South sophomore, is one of 15 students chosen for the Texas Young Masters, a joint program of Texas Commission on the Arts (TCA) and Texas Cultural Trust.

The program presents grants to student artists grades 8th to 11th to be able to grow in their artistic endeavors.

The recipients of the grant receive $10,000 distributed in two years to attend a summer intensive program.

Palacios will be attending the Interlochen Center For The Arts in Michigan for three weeks, where her focus will be in musical theater.

Palacios is the only recipient for this category and is the only one representing the Rio Grande Valley.

Palacios said she has shown an interest in the arts since she was 9 years old.

She remembers attending a dance school in McAllen, and her mother encouraged her to join the cast for “Annie” at her school.

Since then Palacios has been in all sorts of musicals.

“I probably have been in 20 or 30. I did Little Women at the Camille Lightner Playhouse in Brownsville last year and that was fun,” she said.

To be chosen to the Young Masters Program, Palacios had to apply and submit a video performance. She chose one of her performances from the musical “In The Heights” and wrote an essay explaining why she would like to be chosen.

However, she said she did not expect to be one of the few picked.

“We kind of just did it on a fluke, and a person from the Rio Grande Valley hasn’t been chosen since 2002,” Palacios said.

“It was super shocking. I am definitely grateful to receive the grants and get to study abroad for the summer,” she said.

Her parents and Palacios said they are excited for the opportunity and what is to come.