Why Zac Efron Didn’t Sing With Ex Vanessa Hudgens During ‘High School Musical’ Reunion

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Beth Shilliday and Russ Weakland

The ‘High School Musical’ cast was ‘All In This Together,’ performing the song during ‘The Disney Family Singalong.’ But ‘HSM’ star Zac Efron didn’t join in, and we have the reason why.

When Vanessa Hudgens, 31, Ashley Tisdale, 34, Corbin Bleu, 31, and more High School Musical stars got together online to perform on ABC’s The Disney Family Singalong, Zac Efron, 32, was noticeably absent. While he taped a 17 second  introduction the number, he didn’t sing along with the rest of the cast as they belted out what has become the unintentional coronavirus lockdown anthem, “We’re All In This Together.” Since HSM launched him to stardom as Troy Bolton in 2006, fans were really bummed that Zac didn’t take part in the singalong, even just for nostalgia’s sake.

“Zac has done so much in his career to honor his time with High School Musical, but also not to dwell on it because he wants to grow from that moment. There have been so many good times and memories from it all, but there was also a lot of hurt and that comes from his time with Vanessa,” a source tells HollywoodLife.com EXCLUSIVELY. The pair dated from 2005-2010 and even had the fan nickname “Zanessa.” Vanessa is now single again after splitting with boyfriend Austin Butler, 28, in Jan. 2020 after nine years together.

“They don’t talk anymore, so working together in a situation like this would be way too difficult because he would love to have practiced it to make it perfect. But that would mean he would have [had] to work with Vanessa and he doesn’t want that in his life. He is a completely different guy and wants to move on and that is why he did the introduction, mostly as a big favor to (HSM director) Kenny Ortega. Don’t plan on him SINGING any of the music from the show anytime soon. There is just way too much baggage,” the insider adds. Vanessa revealed in 2017 Access Hollywood Live appearance that she has zero contact with Zac. When asked if she still talked to her ex much, Vanessa swiftly replied, “Um no. I’ve completely lost contact with him.”

Zac appeared from a dimly lit location with a scruffy face during the Disney Singalong. “Hi everyone. I hope you’re doing as safe as possible during these unprecedented times. It is my greatest pleasure to introduce a musical performance by some of my oldest friends…and some new ones. I hope you enjoy it and remember, we’re all in this together,” he said in the intro, before the HSM stars, as well as actors and actresses from Disney’s The Descendants, performed the number.

Zac has been pretty off the grid in 2020, posting only twice to his Instagram while road-tripping with pals. The first was on Jan. 30, showing three photos of him rock climbing outside of in Lone Pine, CA in the southern Sierra Nevada. On Feb. 3 he shared several pics of him fishing in a creek further north up the mountain range. Well, at least he was social distancing from crowds even before the coronavirus outbreak.

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