“Do you not know I am a woman? When I think, I must speak.” A Rapid-Fire Interview with the Women of Shakespeare BASH’d AS YOU LIKE IT
Indie darling Shakespeare BASH’d is gearing-up for their production of As You Like It, just in time for the spring! While the company has always put an emphasis on creating more roles for women in Shakespeare, As You Like It is one of the plays that already has a strong female role at the centre of it (the largest female role in the cannon). The show has, at its core, intelligent, powerful women and deep, important female friendships. The production has taken this a step further by changing a number of additional roles into female characters, adding more female voices to this beautiful story of growth and transformation in the Forest of Arden.
We sat down with the women working to bring this story to life and asked them some rapid fire questions about friendship, Shakespeare, and theatre.
They are from top left to right, then bottom left to right:
Jade Douris (Celia), Olivia Croft (Jacques), Hallie Seline (Rosalind), Hilary Adams (Lord, Wilma, Hymen, Co-Composer), Cara Pantalone (Adam, Corin, Oliver Martext), Lesley Robertson (Touchtone), Aubree Erickson (Oliver), Brittany Kay (Phoebe) & Bailey Green (Associate Director, Not pictured here).
Rapid Fire Questions:
Your female hero:
Aubree, Lesley, Cara, Hilary, Olivia: My Mom
Hallie: Honestly, I am constantly in awe of so many of the hard-working, loving, hilarious, talented, generous, intelligent, boundary-pushing, fierce, boss babes I have around me. So many female heroes. I see you. I am inspired by you. Keep shining.
Brittany: Hallie Seline
A role in Shakespeare you’d like to see played by a woman:
Lesley, Bailey, Cara: Falstaff
Aubree: Lear or Titus
Olivia: Tybalt would be fun.
Favourite pop culture/iconic female friendship:
Lesley: Anne and Diana (Anne of Green Gables)
Cara: The Golden Girls
Hallie: I agree with Lesley with Anne & Dianna (Anne of Green Gables), and I add: Cher & Dionne (Clueless), Lorelai & Rory (Gilmore Girls), Carmen, Lena, Tibby Bridget (Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants)… I could really go on…
Jade: Buffy and Willow
Go-to pump up song/song that makes you feel powerful:
Bailey: “Born This Way” by Lady Gaga
Hallie: Pretty much anything by Beyonce, The Spice Girls, Laura Marling, Alanis Morissette, Tori Amos, Ani DiFranco… I could go on (I’m terrible at these “choose one” answers), but for this show, let’s go with “Run the World (Girls)”
Hilary: “Eye of the Tiger”
Brittany: “Feeling Good as Hell” by Lizzo
Best advice you ever received/current mantra:
Lesley: “It’s your Jesus year!” (I’m 33)
Cara: “If you don’t love yourself, how the hell are you gonna love anybody else.” … can I get an amen.
Hilary: Love yourself for your mistakes and forgive yourself often. Try to accept your faults, they are part of you, and always try to be a better person, acceptance is a big part of that.
Olivia: Peace in the mind, harmony in the heart, love in every action. Sow and let grow.
Favourite Shakespeare quote about women:
Lesley, Bailey, Cara: “Do you not know I am a woman? When I think, I must speak” (As You Like It 3:2)
Jade, Hilary, Brittany: “And though she be but little, she is fierce.” (A Midsummer Night’s Dream 3:2)
Hallie: I’m quite fond of both of those but there’s also SO MANY amazing, fierce quotes about women in As You Like It, like: “Make the doors upon a woman’s wit and it will out at the casement; shut that and ’twill out at the key-hole; stop that, ’twill fly with the smoke out at the chimney.”
“You shall never take her without her answer, unless you take her without her tongue.”
Favourite Shakespeare actress (film or theatre):
Aubree: Just one?! Emma Thompson in Much Ado. Though technically not a Shakepeare film, Claire Danes in Stage Beauty. Every woman in Julie Taymor’s Titus. Helena Bonham Carter in Twelfth Night.
Cara: Does Dame Maggie Smith count? I adore her.
Hallie: YES CARA! Maggie Smith for sure!
Brittany: Miriam Margolyes as the Nurse in Baz Luhrmann’s Romeo + Juliet
Finish these sentences:
“I am most creative when…”
Lesley: I’m happy and relaxed.
Bailey: I have the pressure of a deadline.
Jade: I’ve had at least one cup of coffee.
Hallie: I’m surrounded by music, art, people, nature, new ideas.
“I feel happiest when…”
Bailey: it’s the summertime in Northern Quebec, and I’m with my family, partner, and a stack of books.
Hilary: I am on the beach, beer in hand.
Brittany: I’m with my nieces. They remind me that life is full of sweet discoveries and we can always be fun and silly! Also my dog Bruce, he’s endless happiness.
Hallie: I’m in the sunshine, and by the water… especially Lake Huron.
“I feel fired up when…”
Jade: I’m at the first read-through of any play. That moment the first time everyone’s in the room together and everyone gets inspired as a group.
Hilary: I see great talent, whether I see a great piece of theatre or live musicians – it gets me ready for anything and really inspired.
Olivia: The pre-show music is bumpin’!
“In the Toronto theatre scene, I want to see…”
Aubree: more interdisciplinary works – visual/sculpture artists, musicians, physical theatre, language, whatever!
Lesley: more avant-garde, risky, unusual forms and styles.
Olivia & Hallie: more arts funding, thus better wages or compensation for time spent.
As You Like It
Company: Shakespeare BASH’d
Directed by Drew O’Hara
Featuring: Hilary Adams, Daniel Briere, Michael Chiem, Olivia Croft, Jade Douris, Aubree Erickson, Kaleb Horn, Brittany Kay, Justin Mullen, Cara Pantalone, Lesley Robertson, Hallie Seline, Jonny Thompson
With original music composed by Kaleb Horn, and additional music composed by Hilary Adams
Associate Director: Bailey Green
Produced by Julia Nish-Lapidus and James Wallis
Designer: Catherine Rainville
Fight Director: Nate Bitton
Assistant Fight Director: Bailey Green
Graphic Design by Matt Nish-Lapidus
Welcome to the Forest of Arden and Shakespeare’s comedy of joy, wit, and transformation: As You Like It. Relish in the adventure of shepherds and courtiers in love in this energetic barroom staging, full of original music. It is truly Shakespeare’s most exceptional journey through the pastoral world of pleasure and connection.
Junction City Music Hall (2907 Dundas St W)
April 23-28, 2019
Tuesday, April 23 – 7pm
Wednesday, April 24 – 7pm
Thursday, April 25 – 7pm
Friday, April 26 – 7pm
Saturday, April 27 – 2pm
Saturday, April 27 – 7pm
Sunday, April 28 – 2pm
Sold Out online. Limited available for $25 at the door (pending availability).
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