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Sara Sharpe, founder of both Festive Evolution and The Arete Institute, is an award-winning actress, writer, coach, and social entrepreneur from Chattanooga, Tennessee.


Festive Evolution proudly presents Sara’s documentary/docudrama FAIRVIEW: An American Conversation. The film and stage production attempts to reconcile liberal and conservative residents of a rural Tennessee town. 


​Sara is the former Artistic Director and co-founder of the former BroadAxe Theatre (Best New Theatre Company, 2001 Nashville Scene), Nashville’s most political theatre, and one which joins the long tradition of popular theatres working to unravel and express the root causes of social and political ills. Nashville audiences will remember her as Karla in Steve Earle's world premier of Karla (Tennie award, Best Actress).


In the fall of 2012, Sara and local playwright Christine Mather were commissioned by the Tennessee Women's Theatre Project to write a play that explores the experience of immigrants in our region. The play, "Voices  of Nashville," premiered in Nashville, Tennessee in the fall of 2013 at the Z. Alexander Looby Theater and, having received a grant from the Nissan Foundation, toured the state in 2014. Back by popular demand, Voices again went up as TWTP's main stage production in March of 2015.

Most recently, Sara finished a stint at the Nashville Public Defender's Office where she served as Communications Coordinator. During her tenure there, Sara designed and executed the DEFEND NASHVILLE campaign, as a way of educating Nashvillians about myriad injustices plaguing the criminal justice system. 

She is the author of two books: A DRESS, A RING, PROMISES TO SELF, and INTO THE WILDERNESS.

Sara has recently moved home to Chattanooga, TN where she lives with her husband, Jimmy, and is absorbed in her newest project, STILL/WILD



"Sara is simply one of the most tenacious women I know. "

Dixie Gamble

Gamble Productions

"Sara Sharpe is a force. Artist, activist, leader, she draws a powerful, soulful, compassionate circle of people into her considerable gravitational pull..."


Amanda Cantrell-Roche

co-founder, Blue Moves Dance Company