Trinity Assistant Women’s Soccer Coach Advises Actors on Soccer Skills

Alexa Menard ’16 Serves as Soccer Advisor for Play ‘The Wolves’ at TheaterWorks

​Hartford, Connecticut, November 7, 2017—This semester, Trinity College alumna and assistant women’s soccer coach Alexa Menard ’16 had a new group of young women to coach. They wouldn’t exactly be taking the field, but they had to look like they could.

Menard served as the soccer advisor for the play The Wolves—a story about nine members of a high school girls’ indoor soccer team—which is at TheaterWorks in Hartford through November 12. Written by Sarah DeLappe, The Wolves is a 2017 Pulitzer Prize finalist which enjoyed a successful off-Broadway run. The play portrays the challenges young girls face during adolescence, with the action unfolding during the soccer team’s warmups. 

​Above: Trinity alumna and assistant women’s soccer coach Alexa Menard ’16 (back row, fourth from left) with the cast of The Wolves. Below: The cast of The Wolves in costume. Photo courtesy of TheaterWorks.

Menard’s role was to help the actors develop the athletic skills needed to portray a real soccer team. She taught them to warm up correctly, dribble, and to pass and receive the ball with proper technique. Menard was highly impressed with the work of the cast members. She commended them for being able to pick up on the techniques so quickly and to integrate them into their performances while also memorizing their lines and stage blocking. 

This is Menard’s first hands-on involvement with theater. She was brought on to The Wolves by director Eric Ort, who is a former director of the theater program at Miss Porter’s School in Farmington, Connecticut, which Menard attended. While searching for a soccer coach in the Hartford area to help his actors develop realistic soccer skills, Ort reached out to Menard after learning she was an assistant coach at Trinity and also an alumna of Porter’s. Menard saw the advisory role as an opportunity to help the cast while also representing both Trinity and her high school.

Although she spent a short amount of time working with the cast and Ort, Menard said she views her time with The Wolves as a great experience. “Since I had no previous theater experience, it was eye-opening to learn how much goes into a production,” she said. Menard believes the time she spent with the cast was valuable in helping to shape the actors’ techniques and in enhancing their performances as soccer players.

Menard said that while watching the play, she smiled with pride from ear to ear to see the actors’ hard work coming to fruition. She appreciated seeing her work with the women come to life and was able to relate to what was happening on stage as she reflected on similar conversations from her own time as a high school soccer player. Menard said, “Advising in a theater production was something I would not have searched for on my own, but the opportunity and experience to work with such a talented director and actors was extremely rewarding.” 

The Wolves opened on October 5 and runs through November 12. For more information about show times and tickets, visit Read more about the production in Connecticut Magazine

Written by Noelle Lucien ’20