Before being named one of Alberta’s 25 influential artists, Lynda Adams spent much of her career quietly culture-building in Red Deer.
Perhaps that’s why the Red Deer College theatre instructor feels honoured — and a little surprised — to have made the list compiled by the Alberta Foundation for the Arts.
“There are many more artists who could have been on that list — hundreds really,” said Adams, who feels “fortunate” to have been nominated and selected for her contributions to theatre, dance, and education.
She shares the recognition with such household names as former Canadian senator and acclaimed pianist Tommy Banks and Alex Janvier, considered the “grandfather of 20th-century indigenous art” in Alberta.
While Adams is the only Central Alberta-based artist on the AFA list, a couple of other “influential artists” have roots in this area: Red Deer native Trevor Anderson, an acclaimed Edmonton-based filmmaker and member of the award-winning band, The Wet Secrets; and Darrin Hagen, of Rocky Mountain House, a multiple award-winning playwright, performer, director, first openly gay host of a national TV series (Who’s On Top? for the Life Channel), and co-founder of the theatre company Guys in Disguise.
Adams was acknowledged for her “background in dance, movement, and theatre, and passion for nurturing the creative impulse in young people. (She) has devoted her considerable artistic talents over the last decade towards teaching, encouraging, programming, and creating performing arts experiences for rural audiences in Red Deer and Central Alberta.”