Welcome to Ask an Admin, a series in which we talk with theatre administrators working in Minnesota to learn about their backgrounds, their jobs, and what snacks they keep in their desks.
Development Director of Ten Thousand Things
Tell us a little about yourself and your path to your current position (schooling, training, past work/life experience, mentors, etc.).
I am the Development Director for Ten Thousand Things. I will have been with TTT for 11 years this June. I am not a theater person at all, having gotten a degree in psychology and chemistry at the U of MN. I worked at a cancer research institute, before choosing to stay home with my son. When he was ready to enter preschool, I began looking for a part-time, flexible position and came upon TTT.
What did you want to be when you grew up?
I wanted to be a doctor, specifically in pediatrics.
What’s the best part of your job?
The people are the best part of my job. My co-workers, the artists, our board, and our audiences bring me joy every day.
When did you know you wanted to work in theatre/the arts?
When I saw the impact our productions had on of our non-traditional audiences, I knew this is for me.
What has surprised you most about your work/working in theatre/the arts?
I'm most surprised how much I love working in theater/the arts and how much I get to laugh.
Who gave you the best advice you’ve ever received, and what was that advice?
Hmm, I'm not sure about verbal advice, but my parents have been my best role models. Seeing my parents sacrifice so much to immigrate to this country for the sake of their children have taught me so much about love and hard work.
What’s the best/your favorite production you’ve seen in the Twin Cities in the last year?
I'm biased, but it was our production of Intimate Apparel. It was such a beautiful and hopeful story, told wonderfully by the artists.
You’re stuck on a desert island. Which three theatre-makers would you want to be stuck with (living or dead)?
Oh boy, this is a hard one, I think I would want to be around theater-makers that I know, are friends with and make me laugh, so Michelle Hensley, Kira Obolensky and Sun Mee Chomet.
What advice would you give to someone who wanted to work in arts administration/your position?
Keep people in mind first. Approach with kindness.
Do you keep snacks in your desk/work area? What are they?
Well, I work from home, so there is an abundance of snacks! I mostly reach for cereal, eating it without milk.