Diana Huey '08 will lead a stellar line-up of alumni at the 2018 Scholarship Gala at Chihuly Garden and Glass. Huey recently starred as Ariel in the national tour of Disney's THE LITTLE MERMAID, following her premiere in the role at the 5th Avenue Theatre. Cornish News first spoke to her about the experience in 2016 and how she used her role to champion her message of making a world without racism and bigotry the norm.
When Diana Huey received the call to audition for Disney’s The Little Mermaid at the 5th Avenue Theatre, she could think of so many reasons that she wanted to put on the fish tail and red wig. “I love musical theater. ‘Part of Your World’ is one of the first songs that I memorized. Some of my earliest memories are singing those songs in the back of my Mom’s car. And it meant that I could go home to Seattle for Christmas,” she said in 2016.
But Huey wasn’t too fired up about the audition. “I went for the experience and didn’t expect much. I’m Asian. As I said to somebody as I was walking in, how likely is it that they’re going to cast an Asian girl as Ariel (the mermaid with white skin and red hair)? But then they said back to me that she’s a mermaid so her skin color can be anything,” Huey recalled. “And I realized that I shouldn’t be setting myself up for failure.”
Not limiting yourself and not letting others limit you is a message that she would be repeating across the nation. In Seattle and on tour in the role, she gave numerous interviews, including the Seattle Times and ABC News, to champion her message of making a world without racism and bigotry the norm. “I want to believe that we can truly have equality in this world — and the arts are a damn good place to start,” said Huey.
Huey received a Gregory Theater Award for her performance at the 5th Avenue Theater. Today, her voice is heard daily in Seattle as the theme song singer for New Day Northwest and she can be seen on Netflix in TNT’s Leverage.
Other alumni guests at the 2018 Scholarship Gala will be dancer Sam Picart ’13, who will co-host with Dance Chair Victoria Watts, and vocalist/producer SassyBlack ’08, who will lead the entertainment at the After Party. They will be joined by Cornish student actors, dancers, musicians, and performers on October 27 at Chihuly Garden & Glass.
Parts of this story originally appeared on Cornish News in December 2016. For more information on the 2018 Scholarship Gala, please go here.