On Playing Benedick with Matt Shimkus

Playing Benedick in “Much Ado About Nothing” has been a “Bucket List” role for Matt Shimkus since he first encountered the play when he was 13.  And he didn’t have to wait as long as he thought he would have to before getting a chance at the role. Listen to what Matt likes about playing the verbally dexterous character.

Kelly Kitchens on The Tempest

Kelly Kitchens (far right) in rehearsal for The Tempest with Jim Lapan, Jim Gall, Brandon J. Simmons, and Meg McLynn
Kelly Kitchens (far right) in rehearsal for The Tempest with Jim Lapan, Jim Gall, Brandon J. Simmons, and Meg McLynn

It’s hard to believe, but Kelly Kitchens, even with her deep love of Shakespeare, wasn’t all that drawn to The Tempest. Yet, it ‘s a play that kept coming back to her and asking her to explore it. “It’s a play that’s not done with me yet,” she said.  Kelly’s directing The Tempest for Wooden O this summer. Take 5 minutes and listen to what she thinks about the play now.

On Playing Shakespeare with David Quicksall

Bollingbroke, Don Pedro, Brutus, Autolycus, Petruchio, Don Armado. This is just a partial list of the characters that David Quicksall has played for Seattle Shakespeare Company. It’s quite a wide range, and David has directed our productions of The Tempest and Coriolanus. He’s returning to a favorite role, Petruchio, in our revival of the Wooden O production of The Taming of the Shrew. Turn on the sound and take a listen to what David has to say about performing Shakespeare.

Seattle Actor Profile: David Quicksall

David Quicksall as Petruchio in Seattle Shakespeare Company's 2009 Wooden production of "The Taming of the Shrew." Photos by Erik Stuhaug
David Quicksall as Petruchio in Seattle Shakespeare Company’s 2009 Wooden production of “The Taming of the Shrew.” Photos by Erik Stuhaug

If you’re in the men’s dressing room at Seattle Shakespeare Company, you’ll know which place by the mirror is David Quicksall’s since it’ll have a GI Joe lunchbox nearby. “I was a furious GI Joe player when I was a kid,” said Quicksall who plays Don Armado in Love’s Labour’s Lost and will reprise his role as Petruchio in our remount of The Taming of Shrew. “This is back when we had the 11 inch figures, not the little plastic dudes. The big guys with the Kung Fu grip and realistic hair. Every year I would get a new GI Joe because I would just play the hell out of them.  And sometimes they would end up being dismembered or whatever. So anyway, one time I found a GI Joe lunchbox in the store and I had to have it. I don’t know why, I just did.  And it’s not a lunch pail I had when I was a kid, I bought it as an adult. And so I use it as my makeup kit…my little GI Joe lunchbox.”

Reading

Right now, I’m on the third book of the Millenium Trilogy…The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo books.  I started reading those a while back and it’s my guilty pleasure right now…so I’m on The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest.  It’s really pretty excellent.

Listening

My daughter, she’s 11…so I’m kind of listening to what she’s listening to. And she’s listening to a really odd amalgam of our complete musical library. She has all of our CD’s downloaded onto her computer and she plays them at random.  So what I hear around the house is a song by The Beatles and then a song that’s a new age thing by Kitaro, and then I’ll hear Roy Orbison. So I’m kind of listening to what I always listen to, because I have a very eclectic taste, so it’s a combination of all those things. But I have to say that the cornerstone of my musical collection is The Beatles.

Watching

Well, I saw Lincoln. That was the last movie I saw. I don’t get out too much to the movies. We actually watched a documentary about the auditions for the remount of A Chorus Line. It was really interesting. Watching a documentary about dancers and performers auditioning has its own resonance with us, of course. What I really appreciated was the hell that these dancers have to go through to audition for a Broadway show and the kind of paces they’re put through…and I would never be able to do anything like that. But my admiration for musical theatre performers has always been pretty high.

Shakespeare Dinner Party

I would have to invite Armado. I would love to have him at the dinner. I think somebody like Bottom…I would love to hang out with Bottom. I think he’s such a great guy.  And I would have to throw Macbeth in there as well.  I think that would be a very interesting dinner party.  I find Macbeth’s imagination really interesting…he’s a very imaginative guy.  Granted, his imagination is very twisted and dark, but so is mine. So I think he and I could chat quite a bit about the power of…the dark. (laughs)

Hans Altwies on Performing Shakespeare

Much Ado About Nothing (WO-2010)Can you believe it’s been nearly 5 years since Hans Altwies last appeared in one of our indoor shows at Seattle Shakespeare Company?  He’s been a busy guy, but we’re glad to have him back playing the role of Antony in Antony and Cleopatra.  Turn on the sound and listen to this slide show presentation on why Hans likes performing Shakespeare.