Friday, August 9, 2013

"Another Dunwoody High School Success Story"

Dunwoody HS Grad Vivian Bang

By Jennifer Brett
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution 
So it turns out Ryan Seacrest isn’t the only Dunwoody High School alum to go on to a successful entertainment career.

Actress Vivian Bang, who appeared with Jim Carrey in the 2008 comedy “Yes Man,” now stars in the TBS series “Sullivan & Son.”

Born in South Korea, Bang, 29, first moved with her family to San Francisco, then metro Atlanta. At Dunwoody High, she knew of the ambitious fellow Wildcat who used to welcome students each day over the school intercom, even though they didn’t overlap.

“Ryan Seacrest used to make our morning announcements,” she said. But it was her drama teacher, Pam Barnette, who took an interest in her and encouraged her to pursue drama.

“I’m an Asian-American. I grew up in the South during a time when you didn’t think you could have a career in media,” Bang said. “Coming as a transfer student, I didn’t have a lot of friends. I don’t know what made her see me in this light but she really encouraged me. She basically changed my life.”

Barnett retired years ago but is still beloved at Dunwoody High.

“She really had tremendous influence on my life and in everything creative and because she believed in us, which in turn made us believe in ourselves enough to pursue nontraditional avenues,” said Tammy Wichman, now the school’s drama teacher.

Wichman graduated with Bang and is thrilled at her classmate’s achievements.

Click here to read the remainder of the AJC article.

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