Actress leaves New York stage to teach in Kansas

From Hollywood to New York, and then New York to Kansas, Alison Chambers is an actress with a major in musical theater and a minor in piano. Chambers has performed nationally and is now the drama instructor at Seward County Community College. She graduated from Shenandoah University Conservatory, in Winchester, Va. In addition, Chambers has a master’s degree in acting from the School of Drama in New York City. Chambers was born in Hollywood, Calif., and always knew that she wanted to be an actress. “When I was 4 years old, I knew that this was it. I found my passion. I have been doing theater since I was 4. The question on what I was going to major in never came up. My family always knew that I was going to be a theater major. There was never a question; it was just, where I was going to go.’’ It took Chambers seven years to get her master’s degree in acting. “I did it as fast I could,’’ Chambers said. After finishing and achieving her master’s degree, her next stop was New York City. ‘‘If you are going to take your career seriously, you have to move to New York. That is where it is, that’s where it all happens and where it starts,” Chambers said. “I knew that New York was where I wanted to be.” With the support of her parents, she moved to New York. “I knew that I could never be happier doing anything else; I would be miserable if I worked in any other field other than theater.’’ After three years performing and working as actress in New York, Chambers finally moved to Kansas to live with who she calls her best friend: her grandmother. “My grandmother got sick, and I just wanted to be with her and spend some time with her. And, she needs a more stable life. She couldn’t move to New York; she was fragile.” After settling down in Liberal, Chambers’ grandmother moved in with her. According to Chambers, “She is the best roommate ever; we get along very well. She is my best friend. If everyone had a grandparent like mine, they would all want their grandmothers to live with them.” Chambers also describes herself as a dog person. “I love to drive around with my four dogs and my grandmother in a yellow Hummer.’’ New York has always been there for her. Chambers refers to New York as her home. “I have a lot of family and friends, connections, and it’s where the theater world is. If I ever leave Liberal, I’ll go to New York,” Chambers said. From living in New York, her life changed dramatically. “I miss my life as a New Yorker desperately,” she said. But on the positive side, she said there are a lot of perks to living in Liberal. “In New York, I didn’t have a car, and here I can drive anywhere with no problem, but there no one knows you, and here everyone knows you, I have to look good when I go to the grocery store, in New York that does not matter.” “With 8 million people in the city vs. 20,000 here, they are very different, but both have so many wonderful things that I enjoy. In New York the art, the busy life styles and the fine food of New York, but people here in Kansas are so nice, and everyone knows you and cares about you if something goes wrong.” Chambers is planning a winter production for Liberal and close towns to enjoy, confirming that will be “A Christmas Carol.” In addition, Chambers is acting as one of the main characters in “The Mouse Trap,” a production for a dinner theater in Dodge City. Opening for “The Mouse Trap” is Oct. 12-14, with additional performances Oct. 18-22 and 25-27.