Feel free to email us anytime at fromtheheart@cfcommunityarts.com

From the HeART Episode 1 (4/24/16)


On this first episode Listeners are introduced to our hosts Joshua Vickery and Mary Thompson Hunt. They express their passion for having this platform to showcase Central Florida’s creative and talented artists.  Guests are Robert Hill; Artistic Director of The Orlando Ballet,  Arcadian Broad 20 year old dancer who choreographed and composed the music, and, Julian Bond who arranged the orchestrations. These three guests share the process of creating the original Beauty and The Beast to be premiered and performed at The Dr Phillips Center of the Performing Arts.

From the HeART Episode 2 (5/1/16)


Joshua and Mary share their week of art with listeners and each other. Guests are The Orlando Fringe Festival is represented by George Wallace the Festival Executive Director and Michael Marinaccio the Festival Producer. The two tell us about this years Fringe and it’s celebration of 25 years! It is now the oldest Fringe Festival in our Country and one of the most successful Fringe Festivals in the world. Listeners will hear the what to expect, how to come be a part of it. All are Welcome.

From the HeART Episode 3 (5/8/16)


Joshua and Mary talk about their week experiences taking in local art. Guest is Gene Columbus who shares stories of his career as a dancer on film and stage to his long career with Walt Disney World Entertainment, and his current work as The Executive Director of The Orlando Repertory Theater. He speaks of theater, life, marriage, and his 75th Surprise Birthday Party. Gene is surprised by friend and former colleague, Rich Taylor, with a phone visit. We also received a phone call in from Ashley Willsey who is the marketing director of the Orlando Rep.

From the HeART Episode 4 (5/15/16)


Joshua and Mary talk about their week in the arts. Guest is Floria Maria Garcia, President and CEO of United Arts of Central. She speaks of how the organization raises money for Central Florida arts organizations and distributes funds to artists.Listeners will hear what its like to give money away and how it’s done. Click Here to Visit the United Arts Webpage

From the HeART Episode 5 (5/22/16)


Joshua and Mary take time to share of their week in the arts. Guest is Cole NeSmith. Curator of Orlando Creative City Project, Pastor of City Beautiful Church, author, actor, owner of Uncover The Color. Listeners will hear how Cole champions our artists and helps to grow the creative city of Orlando.

From the HeART Episode 6 (5/29/16)


Joshua and Mary share their experiences of art this past week. Guest is John DiDonna the program chair and artistic director of theater at Valencia College. John is also creator of Phantasmagoria which he speaks about the ensemble and their work as they tell stories using poetry, dance, prose, instruments, silks, sword fighting and more…

From the HeART Episode 7 (6/5/16)


Joshua and Mary speak of their week in the arts. Guest is Brian Bradley. Brian speaks of his life as a stand up comic, his 4 years in NYC in the revival of Grease, and some of his history with Mary when they worked together for years at the The Comedy Warehouse.

From the HeART Episode 8 (6/12/16)


Joshua and Mary share about their week in the arts. Guest is Terry Olson, director of Orange County Arts & Cultural Affairs. Terry tells us of his journey as a performing artist who was a founder of SAK Theatre when they performed at renaissance fairs, he helped launch Orlando Theater Project, SAK Comedy Lab, and The Orlando Fringe. We get to hear what it’s like to be an artist while working for the governing body of Orlando. In addition, we see his vision for the future for creative artists of our City Beautiful.

From the HeART Episode 9 (6/19/16)


Joshua and Mary share about their week in the arts. Guest is Dave Russell President of SAK Comedy Lab. Dave talks about SAK Comedy Lab and how it’s grown over the years as a notable Improvisational Comedy Theater. It is the theater that gave Wayne Brady his start and has been a landmark in Orlando for 25 years! Dave also talks about the book he has authored titled; “The Quantum Vision”.

From the HeART Episode 10 (6/26/16)


Joshua and Mary share time with Matt Palm Theater writer for the Orlando sentinel, Cole NeSmith Curator of Orlando Creative City Project and Pastor of City Beautiful Church, and Eric Jacobsen, the Director of The Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra. The discussion focused on the artists who have reached out to offer their talents to raise money and spirits for the families left devastated by the June 12th tragedy at Pulse. In particular much discussion was on a Concert on Tuesday June 28th 2016. This concert is a collaboration of 25 major arts organizations that have put together a show that will be performed at the Dr Phillips Center for the Performing Arts. It is called “Beautiful Together: An Artistic Journey Toward Hope.” We also received a call in and song from DaVonda Simmons, Elicia Flowers, John Flowers, and France Neil. And, Krista Miller sang us a lullaby.

From the HeART Episode 11 (7/17/16)


Ericka Dunlap, Miss America 2004, business owner and Arts Advocate is guest. On this episode Joshua and Mary discuss how early on training the arts helped to shape Erika’s life and dreams. From Country Western singing to tap dancing and her favorite, clogging, Ericka learned focus, dedication to excellence, and discipline. This episode includes a phone call from 10 year old Sophie Schaked who is dressed and minutes away from being interviewed for the finals of The Princess America National Pageant. Ericka gave advice and spoke of the power of stories and integrity. A few hours later we learned that Sophie won 1st Runner up in the Miss Princess America pageant and she won 1st Place in the Interview category. Thanks, Ericka and Congratulations Sophie!

From the HeART Episode 12 (7/21/16)


The three guests include Debbie Fahmie the current Fine and Performing Arts Resource Teacher for the Osceola District of Schools; Scott Evans the current Senior Administrator. – Visual and Performing Arts for Orange County Public Schools, and, Dr. Mary Palmer, Ph.D President of Mary Palmer & Associates, LLC, an arts and education consulting firm, author of over 40 textbooks used worldwide, Professor Emerita at University of Central Florida, Dr. Palmer was Professor and Coordinator of Graduate Studies in Music Education at the Uni-versity of Central Florida and former Dean of the UCF College of Education. These three mov-ers and shakers are making dreams come true for children who are able to play instruments and have teachers. This engaging and lively conversation was all about; “Arts Education for Children.” We hear what it is, why it’s important, how its making a contribution to the lives of children and our communities. The next generation is growing with our children. Listen to how these children will be come better leaders and citizens because of music in their lives today.

From the HeART Episode 13 (7/31/16)

From the HeART Episode 14 (8/7/16)


The Florida Symphony Youth Orchestra is represented by world renowned Hanrich Claassen, Music Director and Symphonic Orchestra Conductor, and, Heide Evans Waldron, Executive Director. Listeners learn of FSYO’s mission to educate and inspire young musicians. Young ones are brought in from all over to audition and then rehearse and perform with exceptionally talented young musicians. During this show you’ll hear what it’s like to audition, how lives are being changed for the better, and, about the work being done to continue the growth of this growing organization. Claassen shared about an European tour he’ll be leading some of the young musicians on this summer. Joshua and Mary are still trying to figure out how they’ll stow away and join them.

From the HeART Episode 15 (8/14/16)


Michael Wanzie joined the hosts of From the Heart. Michael is an Orlando legend known for his humor, funny poignant writing, and his successful series of plays about The Ladies of Eola Heights. Michael shared his story of leaving Connecticut at age 17 to take his dream job of becoming a Jungle Cruise Skipper at Walt Disney World. He told his parents he was being brought to Disney to work a school/work program. Wanzie’s stories takes us thru his 35 years in Orlando as a writer, producer, performer, and yes, for a little while a Jungle Cruise Skipper. Later George Wallace joined the conversation and both Michael and George tell us of their drive from California to Las Vegas and the Vegas ride they thought would be tame and mild that became one of the most terrifying experiences for both of them (and one of the funniest stories to date on From The HeArt). Two great talents of Orlando and two good friends talk about Orlando, Theater, and Friendship.

From the HeART Episode 16 (8/21/16)


Today’s episode featured guests from the Orlando Shakespeare Theater.The Conversation begins as listeners hear from PJ Albert, Managing Director of Orlando Shakes, and, Anne Hering, Director of Education of Orlando Shakes, the history of Orlando Shakespeare Theater from it’s start in 1989 with two works of Shakespeare each summer at the Lake Eola Amphitheater of downtown Orlando. Now at its Loch Haven Park home in Or-lando, The Orlando Shakespeare Theater produces 10 productions a year, two of which are always Shakespeare and at least one play is written by a new playwright.West Side Story is their biggest production to date. The orchestra will be on the thrust stage, the choreography is the original Jerome Robbins work, and from what we hear, the entire cast is outstanding. Anne shares information on classes and programs Orlando Shakes offers young artists up to grad school interns. They use their outreach programs to share theater and workshops they bring to schools. Classes at the theater are available for all ages. PJ talks of the theaters mis-sion and explains how a season is selected. In West Side Story, Mark Ferrera will play Doc and Eric Eichenlaub will play Officer Krupke. They speak of their auditions for this production and their lives as actors. All guests spoke of the timeliness of West Side Story in our community. It was said this production with it’s story so beautifully told thru the score, lyrics, and story written by Leonard Bernstein, Ste-phen Sondheim, and Arthur Laurents, might inspire conversations to explore beliefs, thoughts, and feelings of its familiar theme. Or, perhaps inspire gratitude for a great night of theater.

From the HeART Episode 17 (8/28/16)

On the day From the Heart hosts took a unique look at art with its topic to art of giving. Executive Director of The Mustard Seed, Kathy Baldwin and Executive Director of Rebuilding Together Orlando, Ed Green spoke of how their organizations are helping those in need with clothing, furniture, homes and roofs. Their expression of love comes in their service to change lives by not only giving people homes and furnishings but hope and dignity. These two extraordinary leaders and their organizations are an inspiration. The Mustard Seed is always in need of new or gently used sheets, flatware, and mens clothing that are in good to new condition. Rebuilding Together Orlando is in need of roofing material donations and donation of time by certified professional roofers.

From the HeART Episode 18 (9/4/16)


Greater Orlando Actors Theatre was represented by Paul Castaneda, ‘GOAT’ founding member and director of current production of Jekyll & Hyde The Musical. Also, leading actor playing Dr Jekyll and Hyde, Adam McCabe. This conversation will allow listeners to learn the history and mission of GOAT and what the audience can expect from this production. Adam talks about what it takes to prepare to play both Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde and how Paul as director supports his process. The Mission Statement promises what the theater lives up to: Greater Orlando Actors Theatre’s goal is to provoke thought and communication through traditional and avant-garde productions while concurrently enlightening and entertaining our audience through community theatre. We want to challenge attitudes, stereotypes, and preconceived notions about theatre by introducing our audience to contemporary concerns. We encourage our volunteer talent to share and develop their skills while taking the opportunity to learn from those surrounding them. Greater Orlando Actors Theatre seeks to provide productions and programs that make a vital contribution to the quality of ideas in the surrounding Orlando Area.

From the HeART Episode 19 (9/18/16)

Todays’ Episode featured two leaders from Opera Orlando. Newly appointed Executive and Artistic Director, Gabriel Preisser and General Director Vincent Connor delighted From The HeArt listeners with their stories and lessons from their organization and opera.
We learn of the Opera Orlando mission to present high-caliber, innovative productions and events while building an audiences throughout Central Florida with arts and programs. All are invited to visit their website and Facebook page to not only learn when and where to see their work live, but, to also see video and get information for getting involved.

From the HeART Episode 20 (10/2/16)

A Hidden Gems Episode; Podcast artist Daniel Aaron Moore shares why and what he shares on his podcast; www.justonethingpodcast.com Osceola Arts Studio Theater, were represented by Chief Operating Officer, Jeremiah Krivinchuk, Show director Aishe Soto, and leading actor Robert Rios. They spoke of their current production, The Laramie Project. Margaret Nolan stopped by to tell us about her involvement producing ‘After Orlando’. It’s part of an international theatre action in response to the Pulse Nightclub Shooting.

From the HeART Episode 21 (10/9/16)

Creative City Project Founder and Creative Director, Cole NeSmith joins Joshua and Mary to talk about Creative City Project 2016. A thousand of artists, hundreds of installations, and 20,000 art supporters celebrate the creative artist in all of us each third Saturday of every October. Guests will see Central Florida Community Arts Orchestra and Jazz Band, Orlando Ballet, Cirque Du Soleil, along with poets, experimental and immersive experiences. Cole shares his passion for this night and the arts.

From the HeART Episode 22 (10/16/16)

Laura Hodos, Lulu Picart, and Melissa Whitworth, share stories of the all female cast of 1776 at Mad Cow theater. Laura played John Adams, Melissa portrayed Thomas Jefferson, and, Lulu Picard: Edward Rutledge. The cast and hosts discuss the production, casting, and history of 1776 in a fun and lively discussion of this story of 1776 in history and on stage.

From the HeART Episode 23 (10/30/16)

Anne Hering and Steven Lane represent the cast of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde just in time for Halloween at the Orlando Shakes. In this adaptation of this story there are six actors who tell the story while four of them portray a unique persona of Hyde at different times. Listeners will hear how the show was directed and the rehearsal process for the preparation. The conversation also goes into what it’s like to be a full time working actor in Orlando by two of The City Beautiful’s most talented performing artists.

From the HeART Episode 24

Podcast coming soon…

Garden Theatre of Winter Garden was well represented on today’s program. The two talented leads of Bonnie and Clyde, Tay “Anderson and Preston Ellis visited and shared their passions for playing the notorious outlaws in this powerful musical. The Show Director, who is also Garden Theatre’s Artistic Director, Rob Winn Anderson was also a guest with CEO/Executive Director, Alauna Friskics. We learned of the theatre’s history growth in Winter Garden since 1935. It was come a long way since day’s of segregated seating to their current mission to being committed to enriching, engaging, and entertaining through creative experiences. They reach out to all to bring community and light to every audience thru the arts.