A! Magazine for the Arts

Faith Vance

Faith Vance

Arts for Youth Spotlight: Theater teaches life lessons to Faith Vance

July 27, 2021

Faith Vance says theater has taught her life lessons, and she tries to give back through her service with Theatre Bristol.

“I have gained confidence, a strong work ethic and grown so much as a person. The community surrounding theatre is so encouraging and makes the experience very enriching.

“I try to give the support I’ve been given and for many years have helped with Theatre Bristol’s summer camp. I have also served in different roles with the Theatre Bristol Youth Service Board and put in many hours to help clean, organize, paint, hang posters and work concessions at various events.

“Theater is just one part of my life, and I think it shows how you don’t have to make theater the center of your interests to participate in it. I balance theater performance and the Youth Service Board with AP classes, Bristol Youth Leadership, Student Council, school clubs, friends and family, and the arts help me in all of these areas,” Faith says.

She began acting when she was in elementary school and fell in love with live performance.

“I auditioned for Theatre Bristol’s ‘Scrooge the Musical’ in 2015 and was cast in the ensemble. I continued to audition, perform and volunteer at the theater in the coming years and found a community where I could grow with support.

“Since my earliest days in drama, I grew in confidence and ability with each performance, moving from ensemble to lead roles, such as playing Beatrix Potter in ‘The Adventures of Peter Rabbit and His Friends’ on the ARTspace stage. Playing the author of Peter Rabbit was one of my favorite roles, along with playing Cinderella in the comedy ‘The Trial of the Big Bad Wolf,’” she says.

In the last few years, she has been cast in almost every show, from ensemble roles in major productions like “Scrooge, the Musical!,” “Fiddler on the Roof,” “Disney’s Beauty and the Beast” and “The Wizard of Oz,” to a school girl in “The Adventures of Madeline” and an elf in “Junie B. Jones.” As she grew in experience and height, she earned roles such as Mrs. Hudson in “Sherlock Holmes,” Madam Roselini in “Pinocchio” and Shelly Shellhammer in “Miracle on 34th Street.” She will play Viola in Theatre Bristol’s production of “Twelfth Night” in August.

“My favorite aspect of a show is acting. Characters come to life through emotion, body language and the way you use your voice. While singing and dancing add expression, acting will always be the base of a character.

“My favorite performance type is musical theater. Combining singing, dancing and acting makes the show dynamic, challenging and constantly evolving.

“My biggest influences are Glenn Patterson and Camille Gray. The first show I decided to audition for was directed by Glenn. He comforted and encouraged me through my fear of auditioning, and after casting me in ‘Scrooge, the Musical!’ encouraged me through my worries. During rehearsals, I met Camille and noticed her incredible work ethic and passion for theater. She has taught me so much about costuming, acting and so much more. These two have influenced and inspired me more than they know,” Faith says.

She is a junior at Tennessee High School. In addition to acting with Theatre Bristol, she is the president of the Theatre Bristol Youth Service Board and formerly served as vice president. She also participates in Tennessee High Drama Club and Chorus. She is the daughter of Richard Vance. She plans to attend college and pursue a career in science, while continuing to volunteer in community theater.