Stephanie Bissonnette had the privilege to live her dreams in her twenties by appearing on Broadway. But unfortunately, this week it was announced that Stephanie has passed away at only 32 years old after a year-long battle with medulloblastoma, a cancerous brain tumor. In 2019, she reported feeling a “two-second twinge” during one of the dance moves for Mean Girls musical where she played Dawn Schweitzer; later being diagnosed with the deadly illness. Her courage and strength throughout such an unimaginable fight is something that will never be forgotten.
In February 2019, Bissonnette had to take a break from Mean Girls when she underwent surgery for a brain tumor. She attempted to return in October but unfortunately was still not fully recovered enough. Even with radiation treatment and time devoted solely to her health, it wasn’t enough for the Broadway starlet to resume performing the beloved musical on stage.
Despite her health crisis and the COVID-19 outbreak, she still managed to appear in a documentary chronicling how Broadway was shut down as COVID-19 spread far and wide throughout America and across the globe.
Mean Girls confirmed the heartbreaking news of Bissonnette’s passing to its devoted followers via a tweet: “Our hearts are broken as the Mean Girls community mourns the loss of Stephanie Bissonnette.”
The Mean Girls Twitter account continued, “She filled our theater with her laughter and friendship, inspired us with her fighting spirit and bravery, and graced our stage with the fiercest talent Broadway has ever known. Our original Dawn Sweitzer, Stephanie, was part of our company from our first performance to our last.”
The tweet ended, “Our thoughts and prayers are with Stephanie’s family, friends, and the entire Mean Girls community during this time. We will miss her profoundly and encourage everyone to do something they love today in Stephanie’s honor.”
After Bissonnette auditioned for a role in the Broadway musical Mean Girls while it was still in its creation stage, she landed the part of Dawn Schweitzer and never looked back. Her determination paid off as her performance earned immense praise from audiences and critics alike.
After graduating from the Conservatory of the Performing Arts at Point Park University, this Broadway star followed her heart to Royal Caribbean cruises. On these trips around the world, she entranced travelers with her stunning performances.
Having graduated college, Bissonnette decided to wayfaring move to New York City in the hopes of fulfilling her performance aspirations. Alongside her Broadway success, she went on to feature in a leading role in Keith Urban’s music video for Never Comin’ Down – cementing herself into country legend status along with teaching and choreographing dance.
The renowned choreographer Bissonnette has showcased her artistry at The Muny, Riverside Theatre, Seven Angels Theatre, and Shakespeare Theatre Company. Additionally, she was featured in the documentary Ensemble which documented Broadway dancers’ struggles during this unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic.