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Omaha third grader stars in ABC’s ‘Abbott Elementary’ season finale


Editor’s note: If you missed Tuesday night’s season finale of “Abbott Elementary,” you can watch the episode on ABC.com or on Hulu.In the season finale of ABC’s hit show “Abbott Elementary,” some may notice a familiar face. An Omaha third-grader at Westside Community Schools’ Westgate Elementary found herself a spot on the show.Nine-year-old Etta Hughes is full of hopes and dreams, much like other third graders her age.”My ultimate dream, is to go to the moon and probably be the first TikToker to go to the moon,” Hughes said.And while it may not be as extreme, Hughes is about to see one of her other dreams come true. “I don’t know what I’m going to say when I’m me, but with acting, it’s like, there’s lines and I’m playing someone else so I know exactly what they’re going to say because the conversation’s already planned out,” Hughes said.Usually, Etta is inside a classroom at Westgate Elementary. But on April 12, she made her nationwide primetime debut in the season finale of “Abbott Elementary.”Even though she’s playing someone else, Hughes said her character in the show is not that far off from how she is in the classroom.”She’s honest but she’s brutally honest and she makes a joke out of it,” Hughes said.Hughes knew she wanted to act at an early age. “I realized when I was about four years old because I did musical theater when I was three,” she said.Her appearance on “Abbott Elementary” is her first TV gig.”I stole my mother’s phone to go on YouTube because I didn’t have an iPad,” Hughes said. “And this ad kept popping up like ‘Be one of the first 200 people to sign up and you can get an audition.'”Hughes didn’t even know what show she signed up to audition for back in January 2021. “Luckily, I know (my mother’s) email and password,” she said.Hughes sent an audition tape in October before getting a callback. By November, it was time to shoot the episode.”It feels like you’re nervous but you want to jump and scream and cry at the exact same time,” she said.While she’s excited to start this new chapter in her young life, Hughes said she’ll never forget Omaha, the city that started it all.”I have family here and I would never forget anyone or anywhere that really helped me get to where I am,” she said.Hughes has other auditions in her future. She said she plans to finish fourth grade in Omaha and then move to Los Angeles after.

Editor’s note: If you missed Tuesday night’s season finale of “Abbott Elementary,” you can watch the episode on ABC.com or on Hulu.

In the season finale of ABC’s hit show “Abbott Elementary,” some may notice a familiar face. An Omaha third-grader at Westside Community Schools’ Westgate Elementary found herself a spot on the show.

Nine-year-old Etta Hughes is full of hopes and dreams, much like other third graders her age.

“My ultimate dream, is to go to the moon and probably be the first TikToker to go to the moon,” Hughes said.

And while it may not be as extreme, Hughes is about to see one of her other dreams come true.

“I don’t know what I’m going to say when I’m me, but with acting, it’s like, there’s lines and I’m playing someone else so I know exactly what they’re going to say because the conversation’s already planned out,” Hughes said.

Usually, Etta is inside a classroom at Westgate Elementary. But on April 12, she made her nationwide primetime debut in the season finale of “Abbott Elementary.”

Even though she’s playing someone else, Hughes said her character in the show is not that far off from how she is in the classroom.

“She’s honest but she’s brutally honest and she makes a joke out of it,” Hughes said.

Hughes knew she wanted to act at an early age.

“I realized when I was about four years old because I did musical theater when I was three,” she said.

Her appearance on “Abbott Elementary” is her first TV gig.

“I stole my mother’s phone to go on YouTube because I didn’t have an iPad,” Hughes said. “And this ad kept popping up like ‘Be one of the first 200 people to sign up and you can get an audition.'”

Hughes didn’t even know what show she signed up to audition for back in January 2021.

“Luckily, I know (my mother’s) email and password,” she said.

Hughes sent an audition tape in October before getting a callback. By November, it was time to shoot the episode.

“It feels like you’re nervous but you want to jump and scream and cry at the exact same time,” she said.

While she’s excited to start this new chapter in her young life, Hughes said she’ll never forget Omaha, the city that started it all.

“I have family here and I would never forget anyone or anywhere that really helped me get to where I am,” she said.

Hughes has other auditions in her future. She said she plans to finish fourth grade in Omaha and then move to Los Angeles after.

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