Friends’ Central alumnus Benj Pasek ’03 (pictured at far left) and songwriting partner Justin Paul (far right) won a Golden Globe for the original song "City of Stars" in the film La La Land, starring Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone. La La Land, which won a record-breaking seven Golden Globes on January 8, was written and directed by Damien Chazelle (Whiplash) and features a score by Justin Hurwitz and lyrics by Pasek and Paul.
Friends’ Central Drama Director Terry Guerin had the pleasure of teaching and directing Pasek in a number of performances (42nd Street and How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying) while he was a student at Friends’ Central, and she remains in close contact with him today. Guerin shares, “Benj's success comes as no surprise – he was an integral part of the drama program here at FCS. We are thrilled beyond belief and so grateful for his continued support of our students.”
Keep your eye on this pair, as Pasek and Paul are in the midst of a number of exciting high-profile projects. In addition to La La Land, Pasek and Paul have an original musical, Dear Evan Hansen, currently running on Broadway, and they are writing the music for an upcoming film with Hugh Jackman called The Greatest Showman, which tells the story of P.T. Barnum, founder of the circus that became Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus.
Photo courtesy of Billboard.com