Where was High School Musical filmed?
Salt Lake City, Utah
House, Modern, Gyms/Sports, Schools/Colleges, Theatres
Old Hollywood, Resort, School
About High School Musical
High School Musical is a singalong film made in 2006 following the love story of two high school juniors. The main interests are Troy Bolton (Zac Efron) and Gabriella Montez (Vanessa Anne Hudgens). The story begins when they meet on New Year's Eve as they both happen to be at the same karaoke holiday party.
Although they never expect to see each other again Troy is surprised to see Gabriella on the first day of school and to find out that she is the new exchange student. Troy is the star athlete on the school’s basketball team and Gabriella, a young genius, is part of the academic decathlon. Throughout the movie, they have to find a way to balance their budding romance and a newfound love for theatre and singing alongside their other obligations.
Over the school year, they meet friends and foes, like Sharpay Evans played by Ashley Tisdale, the queen of East High who has her own feelings for Troy Bolton and aims to be the leading role in the school play.
After a successful release of the first film, the series was granted two sequels; High School Musical 2 was released the following year in 2007 and follows the same characters as they face new challenges in their relationship and their academic careers. This film takes place in the summertime, when Troy, Gabriella and all of their friends are out of school for the season.
In 2008 the final film, High School Musical 3: Senior Year was released, and we see the same beloved personalities now grown up and ready to graduate from East High School. Reality sets in as the group notice that, after the year is done, they will be heading their separate ways. Will the students of East High be able to stay together as they follow their separate paths in the future, and will Tory and Gabriella find a way to make their relationship work despite pining for different universities?
With singing, dancing and sports, High School Musical required a talented cast of actors. Did you know that Zac Efron and Corbin Bleu (who plays Chad, Troy’s best friend) needed to complete several rounds of basketball tests, alongside acting auditions? Although it took lots of work, the entire movie was filmed in only 24 days!
High School Musical Locations
All three movies in the High School Musical franchise were filmed in Salt Lake City, Utah. Believe it or not, East High School is a real place and is where most of the filming process took place in the first and third movies. For fans of the movies, this high school is iconic, from the red accents in the Wildcats' home gymnasium to the bright pink double locker belonging to Sharpay.
You can visit this very high school as well as other filming locations of High School Musical, like Troy and Gabriella’s houses if you ever find yourself in Utah. Spoiler Alert: we will introduce you to all of our favorite scenes from the first film, so be aware if you haven’t watched it yet!
Troy and Gabriella meet scene in High School Musical
Whistler Golf Club in Whistler, BC
In the scene that starts it all, Troy and Gabriella are both on holiday vacation at a ski resort. The two are forced into attending the teen New Years' Eve party, and the two meet when they are chosen by the DJ to perform a karaoke song together. Both are reluctant but, after some encouragement from the crowd, they join each other on stage.
Before the music starts the host hands them each a mic and says “Hey you know what? Someday you guys might thank me for this. Or not”. Of course, they had no idea just how true that would be. Together they sing “Start of Something New” before exchanging phone numbers and supposedly never seeing each other again, until the first day of school.
Although this karaoke music and dance shoot in High School Musical is set in the ski resort, it was actually filmed elsewhere. But, if you head to the Whistler Golf Club in Whistler, BC you will recognize the same building that is featured in the opening shot of the movie, which is one of the only scenes filmed outside of Salt Lake City. This building sets the scene for the ski resort and is where Troy and Gabriella first meet in High School Musical! Come see it in person and play a couple of games of golf or go skiing in the wintertime while you are here.
Troy plays basketball at home with dad scene in High School Musical
2248 S Oneida Street in Salt Lake City
In their first class of the year Troy and Gabriella, along with several other students in their class, get put into detention by Ms. Darbus, the drama teacher. When Troy’s father, Coach Bolton, realizes that his son is not at the afternoon basketball practice he is quite unhappy and heads to the detention room to get Troy and Chad back to the gymnasium. At this point in the film, the viewers have learned that Coach Bolton and Ms. Darbus are not very good friends; and in fact, they rarely get along.
After the school day ends we see Troy and his father outside of their family home playing basketball, of course. His dad tries to discuss the day's events, saying “You know Darbus will take any opportunity to bust my chops. That includes yours too”. He’s hinting that he believes she only took his son into detention to mess with him. Troy tries to talk to his dad about trying something new, which the viewers know is singing, but is afraid of what his friends think. However, his dad is only focused on the sport and interrupts Troy to remind him of how important the upcoming game is.
The High School Musical filming location for the scenes at Troy’s home took place at 2248 S Oneida Street in Salt Lake City, USA. The home hasn’t undergone many changes since its use in the movie, and you will be able to recognize it from the street! You can get here easily by bus taking either the 21, 902, or 4 bus routes.
Sharpay plans to stop Troy and Gabriella auditioning scene in High School Musical
East High School in Salt Lake City, Utah
Sharpay Evans is one of the most iconic characters in the High School Musical franchise. She is the queen of acting as well as the president of the Drama Club and is very competitive when it comes to having the lead role. After Gabriella and Troy spontaneously audition for the show and Sharpay sees the callback sheet posted in the school hallway, she is more than displeased.
At this point in the movie, other students in the school have begun to follow in Troy and Gabriella’s footsteps, and are beginning to branch out from their usual groups and activities. Sharpay, who is afraid to lose control of the lead of her show, is set to stop them at all costs. She spits out this memorable line; “Ryan, we need to save our show from people who don’t know the difference between a Tony Award and a Tony Hawk.”
Have you ever dreamed about visiting the very place where these singing and dancing scenes took place? Head to East High School in Salt Lake City, Utah. Make sure you stop by the gymnasium (and sing “We’re All in This Together”) and the cafeteria (where “Stick to the Status Quo” was sung). It is still a functioning high school so you should reserve your visits for after the school day ends. The building is open to the public for self-guided tours on weekdays. You can get here easily by car or public transport; the number 9 bus will bring you straight there.
Troy visits Gabriella’s house scene in High School Musical
2236 Country Club Drive in Salt Lake City
Troy’s newfound passion for music quickly begins to upset the natural school life, and even his friends believe that it is starting to be a problem. Chad and the rest of the Wildcats team up with the decathlon team to trick Troy into saying that he doesn’t care about Gabriella, or about the singing auditions. What he doesn’t know is that his friends have set up a camera, and Taylor has a laptop showing Gabriella exactly what he says.
After realizing that both Troy and Gabriella are miserable, Taylor, Chad and the rest of their friends decide to come clean about what they did. Gabriella doesn’t forgive Troy that easily, and he tries to visit her at her house but her mom explains that she doesn’t want to see him. Troy doesn’t give up though, as he makes his way around the back of the house, calls her, and says “Listen, the guy you met on vacation is way more me than the guy who said those stupid things”. She turns around to see him on her balcony, music sheets in hand, and together they agree to go on with the auditions.
This touching scene in High School Musical takes place at 2236 Country Club Drive in Salt Lake City. This was the place used as Gabriella’s home, and it is actually just a few streets away from the filming location for Troy Bolton’s house. It can be recognized by the classic white arch over the door and you can stop by and admire it from the street! The 21 bus will bring you pretty close.
Troy and Gabriella sing “Breaking Free” scene in High School Musical
Murray High School Auditorium in Utah
High School Musical had some great songs, and one of the most popular was “Breaking Free”. Before this scene, Troy and Gabriella have been practicing hard for their auditions, and we see them training hard throughout the school. But it won’t be easy since Sharpay changed the date of the callbacks to be at the same time as the basketball game and scholastic decathlon. How will they manage to each be at two places at once?
The two singers, along with the help of Chad and Taylor, create an elaborate plan to get both Troy and Gabriella to the auditions. With teamwork and perfect execution, they make it just in time. Gabriella is nervous to perform, especially with the entire school now present showing their support, but Troy comforts her saying “It’ll be like the first time we sang together. Remember? Like kindergarten”.
As the lights lower and the music begins, this scene sparks the famous “Breaking Free” musical scene where our two favorite high school juniors sing together and win over the crowd. The Murray High School Auditorium in Utah was the High School Musical filming location for this scene and if you ever visit you will recognize the velvet curtains and red chairs from the audience.
If you want to see this spot in person make sure that you book an appointment first since the building is still used as a high school and the auditorium could be in use. You can reach the school by car, by taking the 200 bus or the metro’s red and blue line.
High School Musical production doesn’t end after these three movies, with the new High School Musical: The Musical: The Series currently streaming on Disney Plus. These films taught their viewers that it is good to try new things and that you don’t have to be part of just one clique.
Troy and Gabriella show their classmates that you can have more than one passion, and in the end, they bring the whole school together. If this was one of your favorite films as a kid you can take a walk down memory lane and actually roam the halls where all of the best scenes in High School Musical took place.
Take a stroll in the neighborhood that Troy Bolton and Gabriella Montez lived in, or visit the auditorium where they started their musical career. Make sure that you bring a copy of all the songs so you can sing along as you visit the location of each High School Musical film scene.