Don't be afraid to make mistakes, we aren't perfect, and follow the beat of your own drum, just be you.

Quinn Larder (BFA - Dramatic Arts '22) graduates this spring with his Bachelor of Fine Arts - Dramatic Arts (Performance). At ULethbridge, Quinn took part in numerous Mainstage theatrical productions and was the recipient of the prestigious Play Right Prize in 2020.

A male actor in a play, wearing clown makeup with a white shirt, suspenders, a bowtie and red pants.

Please tell us a bit about your experiential or work-integrated learning. What were your three biggest takeaways from participating?

I have performed in various shows with ULethbridge as well as written one play that was staged by TheatreXtra.

My biggest takeaways are the following:

  1. Don't be afraid to fail, I find that a lot of my experience on the stage and writing is trial and error. You try this one thing, and it doesn't work, then you try this other thing, and that doesn't work, but you just keep trying until you find something that works.
  2. You, I, everyone are not perfect. As harsh as this one sounds, it is true! I worked with many people that often get upset because we will be working and they don't get it on the first try. This is a condition where young people will beat themselves up if they don't get something right the first time. I suffer from these things too, so I understand. This kind of couples with the previous one; don't be afraid to fail because you are not perfect.
  3. The final lesson I learned is probably a quote from one of my favourite books Dune; "Fear is the Mind Killer". Fear will hold us back and prevent us from going forward, taking risks and getting yourself out there. Now I'm not saying shed your fear, I'm saying use your fear. Try to manipulate the manipulator to your advantage... What have you got to lose?

What is your most memorable ULethbridge experience?

I think my most memorable moment was when I placed first in the Play Right Prize in 2020. It was such an honour because I'm a fairly nervous person (think Lt. Barkley from TNG for those Trekkies out there), so I was really scared to share my written work with the public.

My thoughts consisted of me calling everything I wrote weird, confusing and niche, but then when I got that email about my play The Murder getting first place, I was overwhelmed with emotion—good emotion! It was quite a time!

What is the most important lesson you learned during your time at ULethbridge?

If you have to gloat to other people that you are good at things, then chances are you are just an asshole and you aren't good at those things you Gloster about.

Is there someone specific who had an important influence on your ULethbridge experience?

Oh! Yes, my big influences are three individuals: Doug MacArthur, Mia Van Leeuwen, and Ron Chambers.

Doug has just always been such a supportive soul to me throughout my university career, he was there for my beginning and he was there for my end.

Mia always pushed me to do my best and helped 'open the door' for me in my skills. She made me realize that I was solid at moving experience and during the Grand Guignol, she heavily believed in my skills even when I didn't believe in myself.

Finally, Ron Chambers. I only had him for one class but he helped me feel accepted about my writing. In my playwriting class, I'd write these bizarre/surreal scenes and he always seemed to enjoy them.

Also my friends! You know who you are!

What are your hopes/plans for the future?

Honestly, I am not sure yet.

I like to live by the 'take one day at a time' strategy because if I make a plan for the next few years, those plans will never come to pass because the world and life is constantly changing and you gotta be flexible with that world.

So currently the future is a big unknown to me and you know what that's just okay!

What advice would you like to give those who are about to begin their journey at ULethbridge?

Don't be afraid to make mistakes, we aren't perfect, and follow the beat of your own drum, just be you.

Portrait of a young man with brown hair and facial hair, wearing a jean jacket and yellow turtleneck and a necklace.

Congratulations, Quinn!

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