When I was working at the Amity Observer Newspaper back in 2002, I came across a very sad notice. A young woman from Orange had passed away and the more I learned about her, the more I felt I knew her.
Jamie Alaine Hulley, the daughter of Judy Primavera and Fred Hulley, was only 20 years old when she died, leaving behind a legacy of talent and creativity.
Shortly after her death, the Jamie A Hulley Arts Foundation was established to help other young people learn about and appreciate all of the things Jamie loved. In the past 17 years, it has helped thousands of children, teens and college students realize their potential for creativity and gave many underprivileged children opportunities they otherwise would never have been able to experience.
Who was Jamie A. Hulley?
(from the foundation website)
Jamie was a creative soul who had the gift of seeing the world as a thing of beauty. As a child, Jamie saw pictures in the clouds, danced rather than walked, filled reams of paper with her sketches and paintings, performed for any audience, sang to anyone who would listen, and turned anything and everything into a beautiful art project. Her dreams for the future always involved “creating” in one way or another.
As she grew into adulthood, she became a talented studio artist, writer, dancer, singer, songwriter, actor, and comedian. Jamie was a lover of people who had the talent of seeing the good in others and making all who knew her feel special. She was known for her warm smile, quick wit, and her loud infectious laughter.
Jamie was an avid seeker of new experiences. She embraced the unknown with a seemingly insatiable curiosity and definitely was a person who danced through life to the beat of a different drummer. Jamie’s dream of pursuing a career in the arts was cut short in 2002 just two weeks before her 21st birthday after a brief battle with an aggressive form of lymphoma.
To celebrate Jamie’s vivacious spirit and the beauty that she brought to the world, her family and friends established the Jamie A. Hulley Arts Foundation. The foundation is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that provides educational and career development opportunities in the arts including Grants for Schools, Special Project Grants in the Community; Scholarships, and Jamie’s legacy programs that reflect the experiences, the places, and the people that she loved.
This is where the money goes:
From Sept. 2017 through now, this is how the foundation has distributed its funds
Eight 4–year college scholarships in theater and studio arts to Amity HS students
13 full scholarships to Missoula Children’s Theatre camp at Fairfield University (based on need) to youth in greater Bridgeport area
3 talent development scholarships for youth (based on need) to take weekly lessons in musical theater at Broadway Method Academy — The program run by Orange native, Connor Deane
Four $1,000 scholarships awarded at the Sondheim Awards – 2 to the best actor/actress and 2 to students nominated by their high school teachers and chosen by the JAH foundation recognizing talent in both performance and in promoting a positivity on stage and off.
School Educational Programs:
More than 25 different educational programs were sponsored in schools in the Bridgeport, New Haven and Hartford regions
• Orange schools: 5 programs including Dancing with the Racebrook stars for its 9th year; yoga program for 1st graders at Turkey Hill School for its 4th year; and sponsorship of the Peck Place Drama Club’s production
• Amity Middle School Orange: 3 programs including the film production program in its 4th-year and Sponsorship of the Spartan
Player’s production of The Music Man
• Amity Middle School – Bethany: 3 programs – including sponsorship of the Spartan Players production of Once on This Island, Jr.
• Amity High School: 13 programs including sponsorship of Amity Creative Theatre’s productions of The Laramie Project Ten Years
Later and The Addams Family, funding to have ACT students mentored by Laramie Project people and Broadway actor Erick Buckley who was a cast member in The Addams Family; sponsorship of The Duality School of Music’s after-school music industry workshop series; visiting artists in studio art, music, and English including sponsorship of the annual Storytelling SLAM; The Memory Project; NAHS annual museum trip, etc.
Programs with Community Groups:
Fellowship Place in New Haven – sponsorship of a year-round weekly dance class for clients living with mental illness
Broadway Method Academy in Fairfield – support for development and production of Evita
Square Foot Theatre in Wallingford – Headlining Sponsor for the 2017-2018 season
Theatre Fairfield at Fairfield University – sponsorship of the student independent project
Orange Community Women – sponsorship of Bubblemania Early Career Awards
One award to Johnny Shea – he is now starring in the lead role in Peter Pan at the Chicago Shakespeare Theater
Art Award at Racebrook School
Art Award at Amity Middle School Orange
Dance Award at Lee Lund Studio of Dance in Milford CT
Senior Thesis Stipend Award at Wesleyan University
What Can YOU Do?
That said, there are ways that you can help keep the foundation strong, so it can continue its good work throughout the next year.
Obviously, you may attend the 17th Annual Gala on Sept. 7. But, if you cannot attend the event, you may make a donation at any time.
Send a check/money order to:
Jamie A. Hulley Arts Foundation
P.O. Box 1208
Orange, CT 06477