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Theatre Student Gets Professional Experience with Rep Stage Apprenticeship

Aly Tu

Since enrolling at Howard Community College, Aly Tu quickly began making a name for herself in the college’s theatre program, with acting roles in Shakespeare’s “Twelfth Night,” “Cinderella! Cinderella!,” and “Sensitive Guys.”

After stage managing for the student theatre production “Middletown,” Tu quickly fell in love with being behind the curtain and has since pushed to learn all she can about production management.

She worked as a theatre production intern last spring for Seth Schwartz, interim production manager in the theatre department. After thriving in that position, Schwartz recommended her for the production apprentice position at Rep Stage, the professional theatre in residence at the college.

“I was ecstatic when I was offered the position,” Tu said. “I signed the contract during our first prep week for ‘Souvenir’ and the rest is history!”

Her current role as production apprentice continues until the end of the 2020 spring semester, which marks the end of Rep Stage’s season.

“I assist in setting up rehearsals, completing line notes, tracking props, set pieces, costumes, and wigs, creating run lists and break downs, and assisting actors with as much as possible in anything they need,” Tu said. “I also facilitate run crew for each production and assist my stage manager in what’s needed for the benefit of the production.”

While Tu enjoys the responsibilities, she loves watching the actors and witnessing productions evolve into “beautiful works of art.”

“It is so humbling and inspiring to see how artistic collaborations can produce such a remarkable outcome,” she said. “Through our production of ‘Souvenir,’ I’ve thoroughly enjoyed how close our team has gotten and the relationships I’ve developed with such determined people.”

Joseph Ritsch, producing artistic director for Rep Stage, said Tu has a bright future ahead. “I have worked with Aly as a director, as a teacher, and now as an artistic director, and have been quite impressed with the many gifts she has as a theatre artist,” he said. “As our production apprentice, she has shown deep commitment to the work, a passion for the art, and professionalism that is above and beyond most. She is a true asset to have at Rep Stage.”

Following the apprenticeship, Tu will graduate with her associate degree in theatre and transfer to a four-year university to study stage management and act. She is considering a master’s degree to one day teach.

“This apprenticeship is preparing me for future pursuits in smaller and larger theaters as well as allowing me to learn versatility in my craft.”

Ritsch expects a bright future for Tu. “She is a name to watch out for in the industry.”

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Topics: Arts & Culture
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