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Peggy Ferguson (1946-2021): Fairbanks remembers a theater titan

Published: Jan. 7, 2022 at 4:59 PM AKST
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FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KTVF) - On Friday, December 31, the Fairbanks community unexpectedly lost a prominent advocate for the arts.

Peggy Ferguson, age 75, died of a heart attack at Providence Alaska Medical Center in Anchorage, leaving behind a legacy of great work in Alaska, especially in the Interior.

Longtime friend and collaborator Steve Mitchell said, “There’s no finer person in Alaska with the knowledge of theater and all its facets.”

Nick Nappo called her “A very vibrant person of the theatre.”

Peggy Ferguson came to Fairbanks from Minnesota in 1969.

For more than 3 decades, she worked tirelessly with theater groups around Fairbanks, including the Fairbanks Light Opera Theatre and the Fairbanks Shakespeare Theatre.

She co-founded the Looking Glass Group Theatre, and participated in festivals across the state. “She was constantly on the go, always having a new project, and tackling every project with just loads of enthusiasm,” Mitchell said.

Despite this busy schedule, Peggy always found the time to cultivate new talent in the community.

For the last two decades, Peggy worked as Managing and Executive Director for the Fairbanks Drama Association (FDA). “Peggy Ferguson deserves most of the credit for keeping this theater going over the last twenty years,” Mitchell said.

She also worked regularly as a director for FDA. Mitchell continued, “She was a very thorough director, a very organized director, and made it very clear what her expectations were of the performers as well as the crew on any particular production.”

Nappo agreed, saying, “She always made strong choices, so you never were in doubt as to what to do, but she gave you latitude to be creative.”

In her 50 years with the Fairbanks community, Peggy left a lasting impression on everyone she met. “You felt like she was always going to be a part of the Fairbanks scene,” Nappo said.

Mitchell added, “We’re going to miss her terribly.”

Though her shoes will be impossible to fill, Peggy Ferguson left the Fairbanks community a brighter place.

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