Tina Fey visits students, former teachers at Upper Darby High School in surprise appearance

Tina Fey returned to her ancestral homeland of Upper Darby on Wednesday, where she visited Upper Darby High School to film a promotional video for her Mean Girls musical on Broadway.

Fey paid a visit to the school from about 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Dana Spino, manager of media services at Upper Darby School District, said. School staff escorted Fey and her group of about a dozen production staff members and friends through the school. Students did not know about the visit beforehand.

Surprise! Look who came back for a visit to her alma mater today! Tina Fey visited UDHS to film a promotional video for…

Posted by Upper Darby School District on Wednesday, May 23, 2018

“Both staff members and students were very pleasantly surprised. There was an exciting vibe in our building,” Spino said. “We were certainly happy to have her back.”

>> READ MORE: Review: ‘Mean Girls’ on Broadway

A 1988 Upper Darby High School alum, Fey has said in the past that her time at the school loosely inspired the 2004 Mean Girls film. Her upbringing in Delaware County has also cropped up on Saturday Night Live, most recently in February, when she played a perfectly accented Colonial-era Philadelphian ahead of Super Bowl LII.

Encores sing for Tina Fey

A special impromptu performance today from our Encore Singers for a special surprise guest!

Posted by Upper Darby School District on Wednesday, May 23, 2018

During her visit, Fey spoke for about 30 minutes with a small group of choir students who had previously gone to see Mean Girls on Broadway as part of a class trip. Fey, Spino said, found out about the trip, and coordinated a visit with the students through production assistants.

In addition to sitting down with students, Fey visited her former Summer Stage director Harry Dietzler, as well as her former chorus teacher, Barbara Benglian. Fey also took in a performance from the Upper Darby High School Singers, which she called “beautiful” in a Facebook video.

The visit comes following Fey’s turn at hosting SNL’s star-studded season 43 finale over the weekend. Previously, she stopped at Upper Darby High School in 2014 for a screening of Mean Girls, as well as a Q&A.

Debuting last month, Fey’s Mean Girls musical is currently up for 12 Tony Awards, including best musical, best book of a musical, best actress, and others.

>> READ MORE: Tony Awards: Tina Fey, Bruce Springsteen, David Morse, and other Philadelphia-area natives lead nominations

Understandably, many Upper Darby High School students and staff members were excited at Fey’s surprise visit:

Some who showed up, however, were bummed they didn’t get the chance to meet her, despite showing up to school on Wednesday:

While others just missed out on the opportunity entirely: