Sandra Hughes is a performer, playwright, director, choreographer, educator and musician who has performed her original plays and performance pieces at theatres, arts centers, festivals, museums, universities, colleges and conferences in thirty-six states in the USA and thirteen other countries.
Career Highlights include performances at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts (NYC), Bled Festival Hall (Slovenia), Duncairn Complex (Belfast, NI) and the Blossom Music Center with the Cleveland Orchestra. She has received professional development awards from the Ford Foundation through Alternate ROOTS, a regional EMMY for Outstanding Entertainment Program of the Year, national distribution on PBS, broadcast on Public Radio - WABE/Atlanta and KSFR/Santa Fe, an American Film Institute Video Festival Showcase in Los Angeles with nomination for the Robert Bennett Award, an Outstanding Partner Award and an Outstanding Community Service Award from the City of Atlanta and an Unsung Hero Award from Fulton County in Metro Atlanta.
Sandra is a vetted member of the National League of American Pen Women. The Sandra L. Hughes Theater Collection housed at the Jerome Lawrence and Robert E. Lee Theater Research Institute at the Ohio State University documents her professional career.
Sandra has taught as an adjunct professor, instructor and artist in residence at Antioch College, the University of Akron and Lake Erie College. She has served as a teaching and performing artist for the Woodruff Arts Center, Phillips Exeter Academy, Dekalb School of the Arts, Aero International Festival (DK). Sandra teaches ongoing creative writing classes for adults for the Atlanta-Fulton County Public Library System and Fulton County government senior citizen facilities in Georgia as well as acting classes for adults at The Mask Center in Atlanta. She also provides arts programming for under-resourced, at-risk and traumatized populations with support from the Georgia Council for the Arts, Fulton County Arts and Culture and the City of Atlanta, Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs.
Sandra’s spoken word album, Kairos, includes her original flute compositions with solo piano by Grammy-nominated composer John Burke.
Michael Hickey - Company Coordinator , Resident Mask Maker, Visual Artist, Theatrical Designer, Percussionist, Performer
A company co-founder – Michael has been company administrator for 30 years. During this time he has managed the day to day business of the company as well as booking and scheduling all outreach and touring activities.
He is a principal performer with Gateway performing locally, regionally, nationally and internationally for 36 years. During this time he has performed in 33 states in the United States and 13 foreign countries. International festival performances include Oaxaca, Mexico; Victoria and Montreal, Canada; Bled and Lublijana, Slovenia; Budapest, Hungary, Aeroe Island, Denmark and Amsterdam, Netherlands,
Hickey works extensively in educational theater as both a performer and teacher. He’s been an artist-in-residence at Lake Erie College, Antioch College, Emory University and the Universidad Autonoma de Metropolitana de Ixtapalapa in Mexico City. Hickey has performed and taught at International and Department of Defense schools in Belgium, Spain, Germany, Italy and Canada. Since 1977, Michael has performed educational programming for Gateway under the auspices of Young Audiences of Cleveland, Atlanta, New Orleans and New York.
Since 1980, Michael has been the company’s resident mask maker. His mask creations have twice won First Place and Best of Show at the National Maskibition in Eureka, California and have been on exhibit at the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, the Iowa State Art Museum, the Art Museum of Arizona State University, Phoenix as well as in galleries in Palm Beach, FL and Santa Fe, NM, His puppet heads are part of a permanent collection at the Corcoran Gallery in Washington, D.C. He has also designed for the Center For Puppetry Arts, Emory University Theater, Theatrical Outfit, Atlanta Shakespeare Company (all located in Atlanta, Georgia), the Cleveland Orchestra, the Akron Symphony, Daystar Native American Dance Theater and the Galeria de Guadalupana in Chimayo, New Mexico.
His television performing and design credits include Gateway video projects that have won a regional EMMY for “Best Entertainment Program of the Year”, two national CINDY AWARDS for excellence in educational programming and nomination for the Robert Bennett Award at the American Film Institute’s Video Festival in Los Angeles.
His background and training in the performing arts include study in theatre, mime, dance and music with pre-professional and formative training at Ohio University, Equity Apprenticeship with the Kenley Players and four years of training with world-famous French mime artist Marcel Marceau in his Advanced Mime Seminars, mime with Juki Arkin, clown with Jango Edwards, dance training with Jerry Burr of the Netherlands Dance Theatre, and Valentina Litvinoff – the last living dancer from Isadora Duncan’s Russian school.
Jerilynn Bedingfield has been a principal performer with Gateway Performance Productions since 1986. She is and has been integral to the creation of a variety of new mask and mime performance works. Her choreographic knowledge of the company’s past and present repertoire is detailed and considerable. Jerilynn has performed for Gateway nationally and internationally and contributed to the development and premieres of new work in Atlanta, Georgia and Santa Fe, New Mexico.
Jerilynn has also toured internationally with Several Dancers Core/ Core Performance Group based in Atlanta and Houston and worked as a choreographic assistant for the company in Berlin, Germany. Her professional career has taken her across international waterways with Driscoll's Magic Productions and around the three rings of the Barnum and Bailey Circus on national tours. She’s also appeared in commercials and several art house films. The performing arts have been part of Jerilynn’s life since childhood. She began at the Pasadena Little Theater in Houston, Texas. Chartered in 1955, it is one of the area’s oldest theaters. She went on to study at the nationally acclaimed High School for the Performing and Visual Arts in Houston where she majored in dance.
Gateway’s programming is made possible in part by support from the Georgia Council for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Fulton County Commissioners under the guidance of the Department of Community Development, the Fulton County Commissioners under the guidance of Fulton County Arts and Culture, the City of Atlanta - Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs and individual contributors.