Nationally acclaimed actor Sandra Lafferty works with Fort Payne students
November 30, 2017 Share

Nationally acclaimed actor Sandra Lafferty works with Fort Payne students

PHOTO: Sandra Lafferty, who has more than 60 television and films credits including The Hunger Games and Walk the Line, talks to Fort Payne High School Drama students. (Contributed Photo | Randy Grider)

Contributed by Randy Grider, Mentone Arts and Cultural Center (MACC) 

FORT PAYNE, Ala. Act One, if you will, of the Mentone Arts & Cultural Center’s community outreach program got underway in November when nationally acclaimed actor Sandra Lafferty started working with Fort Payne High School drama students.

Lafferty, who has more than 60 television and films credits including The Hunger Games and Walk the Line, is serving as the center’s Artist in Residence of Theatre and Film. She began her career in theatre before ultimately moving to Los Angeles.

Lafferty will work with the students on a regular basis as part of the MACC program. During the first session, Lafferty fielded questions from students about her acting career before advising some of the students on the monologues they have been working on this semester.

“It was such a pleasure to have Sandra Ellis Lafferty visit/workshop with my drama students,” FPHS drama teacher Paul Crawford said. “She spoke about the mechanics of acting, the business aspect of an acting career and auditioning techniques. My students absorbed everything she gave and were thirsty for more. I look forward to having her come for additional visits!”

Lafferty found the students’ enthusiasm and willing to be critiqued a great experience for her.

“What a wonderful group of students they were: attentive, respectful, inquisitive and very talented,” she said.

It is our goal at the center to expand community programs to other schools in all arts-related disciplines.  We believe have professionals in the various disciplines of the arts to be huge benefit to the students. It allows them to be exposed to a broader range of experiences, as well as showing them the possibilities of a career despite being from a rural area.

As we near the end of 2017, we encourage everyone to support the Mentone Arts & Cultural Center and its programs. We are currently raising funds for the first phase of construction. We need to raise approximately $600,000 more to complete this phase, which will give us a multi-purpose room with a stage for performance and classrooms.

We have naming opportunities for various rooms of the center. These can be made “In Honor” or “In Memory” of someone.

Also, please remember that we are a 503c charity and your donations are tax-deductible.

Last, but not least, a group of local citizens have formed Friends of the Center to help fund special events. The cost to become a “Friend” is $25 a year. Please contact Sandra Padgett at sandrapadgett@earthlink.net or call her at 256-418-2879 for more information about Friends of the Center.

Randy Grider is executive director of the Mentone Arts & Cultural Center. He can be reached at mentoneartscenter@gmail.com or 256-674-3366.

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