When a Dancer Falls

The beautiful woman on the left. I’d like to introduce you to her … her name is Laurie Payne.

Laurie was born with a passion for the arts. She received a BA from BYU in Theatre Secondary Ed, with a Dance Teaching Minor. She grew up performing and learning stage craft under the mentoring of Jerry Elison and Syd Riggs. Her vocal background includes 10 years of vocal training with Gayle Lockwood and Marilyn Rudolph. Favorite acting roles include Aldonza in Man of La Mancha with Robert Peterson, The Baker’s Wife in Into the Woods, and Nellie Forbush in South Pacific opposite her husband Marvin Payne at Sundance Theater, where she played principle roles for several seasons. She has performed with Marvin in his two person musical comedy Wedlocked, and co-directed with him in pioneer musical Trail of Dreams.  Currently, she has been following in the footsteps of her mother, the magical Joan Koralewski, teaching dance to children. Laurie was raised on ballet and the Virginia Tanner philosophy of dance and learning, and is teaching for BYU’s Children’s Creative Dance program. Laurie was looking very much forward to teaching acting at RMTA – doing what she cares about most: igniting a love of learning in young people and helping them discover the very best in them at the On Broadway Music Theater Academy in American Fork, Utah.

Laurie is married to Marvin Payne. Marvin is an actor, author, playwright, songwriter, and recording artist. He has released eighteen albums of original songs, has co-authored seven widely-produced musical plays, and a folk oratorio that has enjoyed ninety separate productions. He has acted professionally in about forty films (Disney, PBS, the major networks, a Heartland Award winner, etc.), about forty plays, and over a hundred audio adventures for children.  Marvin lives in a cabin with his lovely singing actress wife Laurie, magical daughter Caitlin Willow, atomic John Riley, and funny five-year-old Adwen Lea. For fun, he rambles long distances in the Wasatch mountains rehearsing lines to vast audiences of bewildered squirrels.

Now, I have been listening to Marvin Payne’s music since the 1970’s. His ‘Planemaker’ album was cherished by me and still makes me tear up. In recent years, I’ve gotten to know Marvin and Laurie more personally and we’ve all been trying for months now to get together, burn something on the grill and spend an evening together.

Last week, that changed… when Marvin found his dear wife lying still on the floor, her heart and breathing stopped by an arrhythmia. The songs, dance and artistry all seemed to have come to an end.

But extraordinary measures and new techniques were employed — including an abundance of miracles — and somehow Laurie came back to us. It will be a long road, a difficult road and … because of the world in which we live today … an expensive road.

Artists, musicians, authors … we of the tribe of ‘the makers’ … are almost always self-employed. In America today that almost always means without adequate insurance if we have any at all.

So, next Monday, September 26th, at 6:00pm, Laura and I will be Timberline Jr. High in Alpine to hear great entertainment and to benefit the great cause of these good friends. There will be a silent auction held at 6:00 pm (including items donated by Laura and me) and a concert at 7:00 pm. Performers include Sam Payne, former Young Ambassadors, Marvin Payne, violinist April Moriarty and Todd McCabe, On Broadway Academy Companies, Utah Glee Club, The Dance Conservatory, and the Alpine Community TheaterIf you are anywhere near the Provo/Salt Lake City area, I personally urge you to purchase tickets and come out to support this cause. 100% of the proceeds from the concert and the auction will go directly to Laurie’s medical costs.

If you are too far away to help these good people in person … please go to the ticket page, scroll down and make a donation. ALL donations are tax deductible and go 100% to Laurie’s medical expenses.

Come join Laura and I in supporting the talented artists in their moment of need.

Sometimes it takes a little help from each of us to lift the dancer to her feet once more.

One thought on “When a Dancer Falls

  1. Bradley Reneer says:


    Thanks for making me aware of this. I live only a few blocks away and was totally unaware.


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