The Education Vacation

Hey there adoring fans of Actors Theatre,

And now the startling conclusion of the summer intern series! In the previous episodes you have been treated to the humor of the literary folks, the enthusiasm of marketing, and the culinary lovin’ of graphics, but are you ready to get educated?

You may ask, “But Tara, what exactly does a summer education intern even do? Summer is the very antithesis of schooling! It’s all about getting chlorine in your eyes and forgetting approximately 2.6 months worth of the mathematics and reading skills you learned in the previous academic year!”

Well, reader, get out the SPF, because I am about to illuminate for you a day in the life of an education intern—summer edition.

  • Experience the trials and tribulations of a commute on I-64 like many other native Louisvillians. Trial: Feeling like a member of an endangered species as one of 28 non-transplant Louisivillians that uses turn signals—I blame my transplant parents. Tribulation: Having some time to alternate between the cool tunes of WFPK and the guilty pleasures of the top 40 stations. Also, thanks to the construction on the new arena, my route to the Actors parking garage is vaguely reminiscent of Pac-Man. Right off the ramp onto River Road, left up 4th, left onto Market, left up 2nd, left onto Main, and then a final left onto 3rd to escape those pesky little ghosts.

  • Write and edit articles for the study guides that accompany the plays included in the student matinee series—The Kite Runner, Dracula, A Christmas Carol, A Christmas Story and Barefoot in the Park. August Wilson’s Ma Rainey is part of the series too, but alas, the season interns will have the joy of putting together that study guide. The Education folks send out these study guides to teachers a few weeks before their classes come and see the show in order to familiarize them with the setting, characters and themes of the play. From there, teachers can photocopy the study guide and hand it out to students, or formulate their own lesson plan based on the information they learned from the document. These study guides definitely worked out my writing muscles this summer. With a lot of information to cover and not that much space, there is a premium on the clarity of language.

And call me an education geek, but I love learning new things myself. The information I needed to cover in those articles require me to research a variety of fascinating topics, from the relationships between ethnic groups in Afghanistan, to the geography of New York City, to why the story of Scrooge continues to engage audiences more than 160 years after Dickens’ penned the classic tale. I also had the amazing opportunity to conduct some great interviews with plenty of remarkable people: an Army officer currently serving in Afghanistan, the Afghan-American Cultural Consultant for The Kite Runner, the Music Director for A Christmas Carol, and the Resident Costume Designer for Actors.

  • Figure out how to slay the beast that is the copy machine with the advice of Steve and Jacob, who head up this ship we call Actors Education.

  • Sitting in on meetings with Marketing and Development and observe in amazement just how many hands are at work on said ship of Actors Education. Between securing funding, creating brochures to promote Education programs, and coordinating group sales, it’s all pretty astounding. In the world of collegiate theatre, sometimes you can take for granted that this theatre business is, in fact, a business. But thankfully it’s one that everyone truly cares about the end product and collaborates extensively with one another. And that’s really exhilarating.

  • Suggesting after-work outings to my fellow interns. From Waterfront Wednesdays to Downs After Dark, I really enjoy introducing the other summer interns to the awesomeness of my hometown.

As evident from this summary of an average day, I am loving my time here at Actors. The greatest thing is that not so long ago, I was one of those kids at the student matinees. Yup, as a graduate of Ballard High School, I went to plenty of shows in the Bingham and Pamela Brown. Now, I am on the other side of it! Who knows, maybe a future intern will be sitting in the audience this year.

–Tara Duffy


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: