Cast Spotlight: Erin Hare

by stephaniejankowski on March 16, 2016

Today marks the first of our 2016 cast spotlights, and we’re honored to have the incredible Erin Hare, monkey warrior, kicking things off!


Erin is a neuroscientist by training, currently battling monkeys for a prize in the form of a PhD. She grew up in the woods outside a town owned by Jerry Falwell, hence dripping with religion from every steeple. So naturally she dressed in all black, dyed her hair to match the rainbow, and read Nietzsche alone in her room. Given the choice of Virginia colleges — preppy, sporty, or liberal arts — she chose William & Mary, where she discovered her first love: electrophysiology. During a brief stint at Vanderbilt, Erin moved from slices of mouse brainstem in a dish to awake, behaving primates. It’s frustrating, thankless, and tedious work, but what keeps her going is the thought of coming home to her favorite person on the planet: her 1 year old son.


Hare and baby

Q: Who is Erin?
A: She is stuck in Erikson’s Identity Crisis, but perhaps that’s not such a bad thing? Open-minded, curious, wide-eyed and ready for adventure. She’s still not sure what she wants to do when she grows up.

Q: How did you discover LTYM?
A: If you told me two years ago that I would be in this show I would have laughed. No, I would have dismissed the notion entirely. But motherhood does strange things to the brain. Some friends were in the show last year, and before Intermission I knew I had a story to tell.

Q: When did you first start thinking about your mother (parents) as an individual person (people) and not just “mom” (“mom and dad”)?
A: To some extent this is still hard (at 30), but I think the first time I had this thought was when my mom told me an anecdote about when she was a teenager. She skipped school, borrowed her parents’ car, and flipped it. Her father didn’t punish her for any of this, but prayed for her instead. I realized then that she was a wild teenager once whose parents worried about her too.

Q: What do you wish most for your children?
A: Happiness.

Q: What do you love most about Pittsburgh?
A: I am an evangelist for Pittsburgh. Probably annoyingly so. But people in love are always annoying, aren’t they? I love the blue-collar lack of pretension. I love the secret staircases. I love the little houses nestled into impossible hillsides. I love the artists and the weirdos. And most of all, I love the wonderful community of supportive women that I have found since becoming a mom.

Q: If you could only ever eat at one restaurant in the ‘Burgh, what would it be and why?
A: Little Asia on Craig St. Because bento boxes.<

Q: If you were mayor of Pittsburgh for a day, what law would you enact/change/do away with and why?
A: I would provide up to a year of paid parental leave for all citizens. Not based on current income, more like what you would earn working full time at a minimum wage job. I went back to work 8 weeks after my son was born, and I still cry thinking about it. Many women get even less. It’s ridiculous and tragic.
Editor’s note: AGREED times 10 and AMEN and YES TO ALL THIS.


Photo courtesy of Ashley Mikula Photography

Erin’s Listen to Your Mother performance is LIVE on May 6th! Don’t miss it!

Edley Rsmsey March 19, 2016 at 2:30 pm

We have always been proud of her.

stephaniejankowski March 20, 2016 at 2:15 pm

We can see why! xo

Anne Crowder March 20, 2016 at 2:58 pm

Just bought 6 tickets….can’t wait till the show

Jen Smith April 7, 2016 at 6:01 pm

This is so cool Erin! Totally agree with the parental leave!

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