Anna Heffington is a seventeen year old junior year in high school. She has been pursuing a professional career as a performing artist since the age of nine, and currently resides in Windsor, Virginia. When she is not in lessons, performing or auditioning, you can find her drinking lattes with new friends, traveling, song writing, exploring cities, or adding to her obsession of succulents and plants.
Tell us a little bit about yourself, childhood, growing up, etc.
I was born in Virginia Beach and moved a couple times during my childhood, until eventually settling in a town way out in the middle of nowhere…Haha! Although I can find things I like about the country, I’m in love with the city, and it’s been a struggle to live so far away from everything.
I drive over an hour most days to get to voice lessons, dance classes, auditions, rehearsals etc…it’s been a good challenge for my career though.
Both of my parents were professional musicians as well as a lot of my extended family, so growing up, I was surrounded by the performing arts 24/7, which provided a great platform for constant creativity and imagination.
How did you stumble across this career as a performing artist and freelance vocalist?
I remember when I was four or five I had trouble sleeping so I would make up songs or memorize entire CDs in a couple hours, and I think that’s kinda where it all began. Although I didn’t start to pursue a career until I was nine, it was all I ever dreamed of doing. I’ve never been the type of person to wonder what I was gonna do with my life, or what I wanted to be. From the time I was young, I’ve been super independent and driven, so I guess it’s just something I’ve always had a passion for.
Can you name an experience while pursuing this career that has stuck with you the most?
Absolutely! I attended Torggler Summer Vocal Institute in summer 2016, and while I was there Mandy Patinkin came and gave a master class.
Originally, we were all supposed to sing for him, and then be critiqued, but once we started, he invited us all to sit on stage with him.
He talked for hours about his life experiences as a singer and an actor and how he uses those experiences to connect with a character, challenges he’s overcome, tips for auditions, how to find what makes you unique as an artist while at the same time staying true to yourself and so much more! He was incredibly down to earth and I really respect him for that..Someone who isn’t afraid to give good advice, and talk real life with real people, is so rare these days.
What advice can you give for young women finding their feet in this field?
Never give up. You hear that a lot, (often times being used too lightly) but when you really think about it, it has a huge significance. Believe in yourself. Work hard. Build community that you can learn from and be supported by, but support them as well. Know that you’ve got something amazing and original to bring to the world and giving up is only going to hinder that from happening.
What have these experiences meant in your walk with Christ?
Being in the performing arts is amazing and difficult all at the same time because here I am, putting myself in a position where I’m surrounded mostly (but not exclusively) by non-Christians. The biggest thing I’ve learned is the need to be deeply rooted…to know where my worth comes from, and who’s I am. I’ve learned that I have a choice each day. To compromise (because let’s face it, that is so much easier) or to stand strongly in what I believe, and I choose the latter.
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