‘Mean Girls the Musical’ Pays Tribute to Stephanie Bissonnette, Who Suddenly Passed Away This Weekend

On December 18th, Mean Girls the Musical paid tribute to one of their own, Stephanie Bissonnette, in a touching and heartbreaking Twitter post. Bissonnette passed away the day prior and while a cause of death has yet to be revealed, the Broadway community is mourning the loss of a talented performer.

“Our hearts are broken as the Mean Girls community mourns the loss of Stephanie Bissonnette. Our original Dawn Sweitzer, Stephanie was part of our Broadway company from our first performance to our last,” the Broadway musical posted on their official Twitter – sharing a photo of the beloved Bissonnette. 

“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,” the musical continued, touting her laughter, friendship, fighting spirit, and bravery. 

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Stephanie Bissonnette was diagnosed with medulloblastoma in 2019 – one year after making her Broadway debut with Mean Girls the Musical. She noticed a ‘twinge’ in her brain while she was performing, which she eventually had checked by a doctor. Just days later, she was having surgery. 

“I don’t think we would have found it if I worked a normal 9-to-5 job. Because I move so much and I do crazy things for a living—I’ve been doing it since I was 5—just [that] little moment in the show [made me go], ‘Why am I having trouble today? There’s got to be something else going on,” she said at the time. 

According to Johns Hopkins, medulloblastoma is the most common brain tumor found in children, but can also be found in adults – though rare in individuals above the age of 30. The tumor originates in the cerebellum, which is found at the base of the brain. Treatment includes surgery, chemo, and radiation.

Some common symptoms of medulloblastoma are dizziness, double vision, nausea, vomiting, lethargy, confusion, head bobbing, difficulty walking, hydrocephalus, nystagmus, and/or poor muscle control (ataxia). If your doctor suspects medulloblastoma, an MRI will confirm or deny the presence of a tumor.

Stephanie Bissonnette Was Just 32 Years Young

Stephanie Bissonnette played a vital role in Mean Girls the Musical, not just in front of the audience, but behind the scenes as well. She was a part of the musical when it first opened its doors until the moment they were forced to close its doors as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic in early 2020. 

She recently appeared in the Broadway on Demand documentary titled Ensemble, which tells the story of several Broadway performers who were left without work during the COVID-19 pandemic shutdowns. Bissonnette also has credits in The Muny, Riverside Theatre, Shakespeare Theatre Company, and more.

In addition to her time on Broadway, Bissonnette earned a BA in Dance Performance from Point Park University Conservatory of the Performing Arts and taught contemporary musical theatre dance at the Broadway Dance Center. She spent time performing around the world with Royal Caribbean. 

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At just 32 years old, Bissonnette had so much life left to live and was often giving back to her community. She was very active in charity performance circles, including a lot of support given to Broadway Bares over the past few years. Our hearts go to her family, friends, cast members, and anyone else impacted.

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