Growing up Williams – where “Girlyman” was the music of choice – was sure to produce culture, talent, and a knack for music. The family bonded over their folksy tight harmonies, have gone to see the band live, and enjoyed switching up the three part harmony between each of the seven members. Greg and Marsha raised their children to appreciate theatre, music, and knowing where they came from. Among the five children is the second to youngest – Miss Flyn Williams.
Flyn grew up watching her parents perform on what seemed like “the big stage” as a little girl. She recalls the rehearsal halls, numerous tech weeks and couldn’t wait for her turn to grace the stage with her presence. Her first play was in the fifth grade when she was cast in Danville Light Opera‘s “The Great Ghost Chase.” From there, Flyn did numerous shows between DLO, The Beef House Dinner Theatre, Solo and Ensemble contests, and also played the trumpet in band.
Now she is only days away from chasing her big stage dreams as she prepares to travel to New York City and audition for the leading role Tracy Turnblad in NBC’s Hairspray Live! “When my sister, Bailey, posted it on Facebook and tagged me in it my first thoughts were ‘no way…not gonna happen’.” But the second the tag hit, Flyn was flooded with encouragement and support pushing her to chase her dreams.
One particular comment from friend Wesley Billings-Wilson stood out: “Do it Do it Do it!! Tracy herself didn’t think she would make the Corny Collins Show and she didn’t… But she found another ticket to get her right where she belonged that just happened to make her dream come true. Take a chance and have fun.”
The second Flyn said “Yes!” everyone jumped on board. Her Party Princess sister, Bailey, immediately told her to start up vocal lessons with Tyler Thompson, type up her resume and get head-shots taken. From there, her parents, siblings, and friends put together a benefit to raise enough money to send Flyn (along with long-time friend – Bryan Jenkins) off to The Big Apple. Bryan was on board from the second Flyn asked. “I wouldn’t be able to go with anyone else. He’s my Link Larkin. He puts me in my zone.” The two met in junior high during a DLO show and became immediate friends.
This will not be the first experience Flyn has had with an audition in front of big names. In 2012, Flyn received a phone call at midnight from friend, Dalton Halls, asking if she wanted to drive to Chicago the next morning and audition for the second season of The Glee Project. Both Flyn and Dalton made it through three rounds of producers and ended up meeting Glee writer and producer Ryan Murphy to be considered for the top eighty. “It was such an amazing experience getting so close. We made so many friends and the judges were so nice.” Now as she heads to Time Square she hopes she doesn’t get lost in the “intensity” of it all. “I just want to keep it light – and I’ll have Bryan there to help me with that.”
Not only has Flyn been blessed with an amazingly talented and supportive family, but Flyn has been encouraged and influenced with many great mentors and theatre friends who have helped guide her along the way. She credits David and Jennifer Woodrow for always giving her those “power house roles” because they believed in her. “They really helped shape who I am as an actress and performer.”
She also credits the many theatre groups she has been a part of including one of her favorite roles that she played last year as Magenta in The Rocky Horror Show for the DACC Players alongside Bryan and I.
Flyn is excited for this experience and overwhelmed with the amount of support she has received from her boyfriend Seth, her siblings, her parents, family and friends. “I’m not just doing this for me. I’m doing this for everybody in Danville. It’s exciting, everyone is on board, and I feel like it raises morale. Look at Dick Van Dyke!”
Flyn appreciates the nostalgia of what the Van Dyke’s and other Danville celebs have done for our community. “What if one little chubby girl who wants the sames things as I do gets inspired by what I am doing? Then it’s worth it! This is something I want for everybody.”
Let’s all rally behind this girl, Vermilion County! Go knock ’em dead, Flynny!
Don’t dream it, be it.
Peace & Love,
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