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TAAP Class 2017: Jordyn Prince, Education Apprentice

July 5, 2017

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Theatre Aspen and I stumbled upon each other like meeting your favorite musician at a bar: unexpectedly and surprisingly. I had spoken to Paige Price at an event in Chicago months after I had graduated college at The Theatre School at DePaul University, where I studied directing and theatre for young audiences. I always knew I wanted to work with children, but I couldn’t leave my passion for theatre at the door. After much discussion of life and career goals (summarized now to save you the time of my existential crisis) with Paige, she asked me, “Why don’t you consider the Education Apprenticeship at Theatre Aspen next summer?”

… The what? I had hardly heard of it!

I continued my many jobs and projects in Chicago, but never forgot about that night for months to come. Finally, it was application time and I decided to try my luck at an opportunity that I knew [deep-down] I would regret if I passed it up.

I was so right.

I packed up my apartment and traveled out west to a brand new state I had never been to … it was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. Theatre Aspen has given me opportunities I wouldn’t have even dreamed about in Chicago or anywhere else. I’m so lucky to be a part of this dedicated and passionate TA family!

Immediately, I was taken under the wings of Graham Northrup (Director of Education), Britney Kuehm (Education Associate), Allison Lloyd (Summer Programs Coordinator) and Amber Julian (Production Manager). They are the best of the best without a doubt; they’ve taught me so much about life and teaching, and I’m not even halfway done with my summer here! While some days are harder than others, it is definitely the most satisfying and gratifying job, especially when you see the joy and sparked imagination within each student. They threw me right in after a couple weeks of observing and learning administrative aspects of a theatre’s educational department, allowing me to teach my own courses within each summer program. Currently, I am working as an assistant director in our Musical Theatre Workshop, Alice in Wonderland Jr. Not only do I get to teach, but I also get to be back in a rehearsal room again, which I have called a comfortable “home” my whole life. It’s the best of both worlds I was looking so hard for at the beginning of my journey.

With all that being said, I get to have fun in Aspen, as well! The other apprentices and I have created our own supportive family. We love going hiking, trying new restaurants and bars in town (especially during brunchtime), watching free concerts on Thursdays in Snowmass, having movie nights in our apartment-styled living, checking out the weekly farmer’s market and shopping at the wonderful local stores in the city. We recently created a Fourth of July float in honor of our mainstage show, Hairspray, and got to sing and dance for the whole city of Aspen in the parade! I was spoiled with hugs from my many students on the parade route and realized exactly why Theatre Aspen is aspiring me to pursue my career in theatre education: because I get the opportunity to inspire and insight the future generation of theatre artists in hopes that they chase their own dreams and become good people for tomorrow’s world.