Kathryn Higgins, arts ministries director for The Salvation Army Eastern Territory, talks about her unique path to parenthood, performances at Old Orchard Beach, and how the art of improv guided her path as an actor.
I started as the arts ministries director in December of 2018. I’m enjoying having one foot in production, and another in performance. The Arts Ministries Bureau exists to model and encourage quality creative arts for worship and to spread the gospel of Jesus. We are really excited to reveal a new initiative called the stART Fund, which will help to financially support local corps arts programs.
Adopting a child can seem daunting. There were definitely issues that we dealt with when we welcomed a child into our home who had a full personality and a life before she met us. When we became parents, my husband and I committed to raising and loving our daughter, no matter what difficulties we would face as a family or as a couple. It didn’t feel as daunting because we had a great support system. How our daughter came into our lives continues to anchor my faith in the Lord. I couldn’t have gone through what I did with her and ever doubt that He is present. I love to share this story; please ask me about it the next time you see me.
Performing aerial silks at the Old Orchard Beach Pier is one of the highlights of my year. Four years ago, after I took my first silks class, I could barely move my arms, but I fell in love. Aerial silk is a circus art that involves hanging from fabric suspended from the ceiling. This year, I’m looking forward to debuting a new silk routine to “You Will Be Found,” from the musical “Dear Evan Hansen.” Additionally, I have begun training on the lyra (hoop) and will be performing to “Never Enough” from “The Greatest Showman.”
In high school, I was part of the improv team, which became the foundation of my understanding of acting. The rules of improv are basically the rules of life: accepting and building on other’s ideas, teamwork, and listening. I think improv is a great starting point for young actors, as well as for experienced veteran performers.
The story of “Peter Pan” has always been my favorite. I watched the Mary Martin version as a child and memorized every line and step. I pitched the idea to Carol Jaudes when she was arts ministries director, and I’m excited to see “Peter Pan” come to life through CAST 2019. You can catch their performance at the Old Orchard Beach Pavilion on July 31st at 7:30 p.m.
interview by Hugo Bravo