PHOENIX (KSAZ) - The 89th Annual Academic Awards may, for some, be remembered by a last-minute stumble that resulted in "La La Land" being announced as the Best Picture instead of "Moonlight", but for others, especially people in the Valley, it is also remembered for Emma Stone's Best Actress win, for her role in "La La Land".
Stone's win on Sunday night, the first for the actress, is also the first time an Arizona native won the prestigious industry award. Stone grew up in Scottsdale.
For Bobb Cooper, Producing Artistic Director for Valley Youth Theatre, it's an absolute dream come true.
"It's the greatest thing, to just watch them grow, encourage them, and give them a place where they can dare to be themselves," said Cooper. Cooper was credited by Stone herself for giving her the first real taste of a dramatic role.h
The day before Stone made history, Cooper texted his former a student. The text was a reminder to enjoy every moment of her well-deserved success.
"She texted me back and said thank you to me," said Cooper.
Emma, or "Emily" as she was known back then, appeared in almost 20 productions during her time at Valley Youth Theatre. She left the theater at the age of 14, but her costumes are still on display, serving as a reminder that anything is possible, when someone follows their dreams.