Julie and the Phantoms Star Madison Reyes Breaks Down Her Audition to Lead the New Netflix Show

© Provided by People KAILEY SCHWERMAN/NETFLIX The 16-year-old from Allentown, Pennsylvania, has the title role in Netflix's new musical dramedy series Julie and the Phantoms , directed and produced by Kenny Ortega, the man behind teen megahits like High School Musical and Descendants .

© KAILEY SCHWERMAN/NETFLIX Madison Reyes was a high school freshman when she first auditioned for Netflix's Julie and the Phantoms , directed by High School Musica l's Kenny Ortega It's a lofty role, to be sure, but Reyes says her audition when she was 14 didn't make her nearly as nervous as a recent challenge she faced.

"The night before I went to take my driver's permit test, I was so nervous," she tells PEOPLE.

"My dad was like, 'This is directed by Kenny Ortega and I don't know what you did to get these people's attention, but I'm very proud of you.'

© Provided by People KAILEY SCHWERMAN/NETFLIX Julie and the Phantoms Meeting a starmaker like Ortega didn't shake Reyes either.

Once she got the part, Reyes and her trio of ghost bandmates — Luke (Charlie Gillespie), Reggie (Jeremy Shada) and Alex (Owen Patrick Joyner) — spent a month training at a music and acting bootcamp together, and formed a tight bond well before they began filming.

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