Maureen Daly

Cultural Arts Director, Town of Fuquay-Varina; Director of the Fuquay-Varina Arts Center

After a nine-month delay, the Fuquay-Varina Arts Center opened it’s doors in March, under the leadership of Maureen Daly.

Start ‘em Early: I was lucky, as a youngster, that my mom and dad were pretty adamant about taking the kids out regularly to see theater and go to concerts and movies and restaurants with tablecloths. Probably in high school I realized not every kid grew up thinking that going to the new art exhibit was cool.

Longtime Coming: They have talked in Fuquay-Varina about having an arts center for better than 25 years. …It’s not about what I want or what I like. We are here for what the community wants to explore, what they want to see.

Goals: I would really like to find ways to make all the arts — theater, visual arts, dance, performance art — to really demystify them. With this kind of a facility, we are working on a community level that just says, “Come in and try this.” It is not so profound that you can’t reach it.

In Defense of Musicals: When all of a sudden the emotion is so strong that you don’t have words, you have something else! You can’t tell me that people don’t walk down the street when they are happy whistling or singing.

We all do it!

Daly includes “The King and I” and “Come From Away” among her favorites.

Just Keep Swimming*: So often we have this idea that if I get on stage it has to be perfect, and what if I can’t paint that perfect picture. It doesn’t matter. What matters is that you are doing it — that you paint or dance, or that you try. And if you love it, then keep practicing.

*“Finding Dory” is another favorite.

Encouraging Empathy: The arts are one of those things that create those relationships, that mind and that heart that says, “There are experiences more than mine, and they have value. It’s not just about me.”

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