Erin Cressy goes to Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas. She actually graduates in a week and is studying Theater with a focus on Directing and Performance.
Carianna Arredondo: I have to ask being a native myself, are you from Texas?
Erin Cressy: I am, I grew up in Houston and now go to school near Austin.
CA: So what brought you to New York City?
EC: I initially never though that I was going to try making a career in New York, but after discovering the New York Arts Program I realized that it might be a possibility for me. That if I was able to make that transition and get used to the city, I could give it a shot. It feels like there’s no other city that has more opportunities than New York, so I’m glad I ultimately wound up here.
CA: And where are you interning right now?
EC: I’m interning at Primary Stages, which is an Off-Broadway theater company.
CA: And what kind of work do they have you do?
EC: I initially started out as a Production Assistant there, which essentially has me assisting on the production on one particular show. I assisted with the production of a show called The Model Apartment that ended up being very successful. And then after that show closed I started working in their literary office, where I read plays for possible next season productions as well as running general errands for the artistic staff.
CA: And since you’re graduating in a week I’ve heard you’re staying in New York?
EC: Yes, I am. I’m going to be moving to Brooklyn in January. And I am excited about my place––I have now officially survived my first New York apartment hunt. I’m looking for other internships I might want to pursue and have a few independent projects lined up as well.
CA: You also have a paying job here as well too.
EC: Yeah, I work at Starbucks as a barista. They’ve been really flexible and very understanding about my job situation, so it’s been a great place to work.
CA: So what are some of your top spots and hangouts?
EC: Hmmm, I have lots. As far as theater goes, I have really loved going to shows at the Public Theater. They have really affordable student rush tickets––they play, like, five shows at a time and they are all really amazing.
I also enjoy seeing really weird edgy stuff in Brooklyn and seeing amazing actors in really shady theaters, which is proof that great performances happen everywhere here.
I’ve also really enjoyed the restaurant scene here. I am a vegetarian and vegan when I feel like it so it’s really fun to experiment with different cuisines because you have so many options here and I try lots of new places all the time.
CA: So what’s been your favorite restaurant here?
EC: A far as convenience goes, Loving Hut is a block away from the NYAP housing and they have really tasty stuff––I go there way more frequently than I should and enjoy it over there.
CA: And what about the best meal you’ve had while here?
EC: Oh man.
CA: Or the top ten meals while here?
EC: I’ve had so many. If I could think of a meal I really enjoyed I’d give it to Fritzl’s Lunch Box in Bushwick. They have fantastic food and really good pie.
CA: Do you think NYAP helped you transition into the city?
EC: I think when I realized that this program existed it made me feel like New York wasn’t so scary. It helped me take things in baby steps and feel secure enough to be more adventurous then I would’ve been otherwise. I was able to take more risks and now that I am going to be on my own I’ve build a solid foundation for myself.
CA: Do you have any advice for someone participating in this program?
EC: I can’t speak for the other departments in the program, but I would say that the theater program gives you a lot of freedom and a lot of resources. In that, you should take advantage of the people that are working here and the connections and resources they have, but also not be afraid to look into other places and things on your own as well. There’s always something new to pursue.
CA: Thank you Erin!