How going to a small college gave me confidence

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“Big fish in a little pond” is how Colette Freedman describes the confidence Haverford gave her to pursue her dreams.

“More than anything my experience at Haverford College gave me confidence. I graduated feeling that I could do absolutely anything,” she says. “Spending four years in such a deliciously nurturing environment gave me the confidence to pursue my dreams as a writer and an actor.”
Freedman majored in English, where history, drama and Shakespeare were her favorite subjects. “I was fascinated by the history of plays. The first plays were performed in front of churches,” said Freedman. Her advice for those who are interested in playwriting, acting, or producing: “Find a community of people who have the same vision and goals. It’s a tough journey, but there are thousands of people on it with you, so surround yourself with creative people who are equally as impassioned and supportive.”

Now a playwright, Freedman has a new play called Sister Cities. The tale is of four estranged sisters—Baltimore, Dallas, Carolina and Austin—reuniting after the alleged suicide of their mother. “All the characters in Sister Cities are a different part of me,” says Freedman. “One is a flawed former all-star lacrosse player, one is an uptight professional, one is a neurotic teacher, and the youngest is a free-spirit college student whose ‘youth perpetuates the illusion that she’s capable of anything.’ That’s the great thing about writing different characters, is that you can clothe them in imperfections of your own personality.

“I love names,” she adds. “In Sister Cities, each woman is named after the city in which she was born. Kim, Sarah, and Jen don’t tell a story as well as Baltimore, Austin and Dallas.”

“Being a writer is an amazing job, but we’re all writers,” says Freedman. “Most of us just forget to put our stories down on paper.”

Reprint of Evita Alpheaus’s article “Big Fish in a Little Pond” Published on: 06/01/07

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