A Letter to the Apprentices, by Lisa Dring


Hi new babes,

I got to meet some of you this summer, but for those I haven’t: welcome. It’s been such a joy looking at your headshots. You guys are like newer, firmer, definitely taller versions of us. Us 2.0! To business…

Annie. Annie! Annie will help you get to the center of yourself, of what you want to say, but you need to show up. She’s a magnet for truth and raw life and she’ll completely open your heart if you let her.

Find her. Annie’s in Louisville for such a short time, you have to make an effort to go to pull her aside at the picnic or go to her hotel at the end of a 12-hour tiresome crew-filled day and talk about your work. I went through a few days of feeling so insecure in my writer/creator voice that I didn’t want to take up her time, but your story is worth it. No matter what it is.

This is true with so many experiences you’ll have this season, but push through the ‘oh this is stressful where is all my time oh my god so vulnerable!’ of everything your doing. Push to the, ‘holy shit, I’m being given time, space, mentors, people to create with, an audience, and the chance to show my humanity onstage.’ What I loved so much about seeing my fellow apprentices’ solo work is how much of their hearts just bled into everything they did. When you take a playwright’s piece, you put yourself into another story and the audience sees a blend of those voices. Now you get to put your own heart into your own story. Pure, unfiltered you. First cold press.

You may find yourself shirtless laying on top of a sewing machine pretending to bang someone after talking about your dead grandma and then be like, oh crap, I’ve got to go to crew. And later while you’re curling wigs or cleaning steel you’ll be like, what’s going on? Who am I? WHAT IS THIS CRAZY PLACE? Trust that vulnerability and weirdness. Keep writing.

If you hate it, you never have to make solo work after the program. But give this your all because you’ll never know otherwise. I know this may sound like hippie BS but it healed me, in so many ways.

Love you mudda truckas,


Anytime, seriously:


also on ye olde facebook


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