SIA Team

Featured Intern: Rosemary Richings


Hi there!

My name’s Rosemary and I’m a brand new addition to the Shakespeare In Action team. Being part of the Shakespeare In Action team allows me to be a major part of something relating to one of my greatest passions: theatre which is awesome!

I’m primarily a writer but theatre has always been a part of my life. As the daughter of a local film/theatre/television actor I spent a lot of time growing up on theatre and film sets. The first time I ever set foot on set a major fascination with the film and theatre production  process started to develop within me. I started off taking acting classes at Young People’s Theatre , wrote my first play, Streets Of The Western Corners at age 15 for Tarragon Theatre’s annual under 20 for under 20s playwriting contest, and  had my first performed play by age 17, which was also my directing debut at Tarragon Theatre’s Paprika Festival.

Currently I’m in my fifth and final year of my English and Drama Studies double major at York University’s Glendon College. On campus I’ve been involved in a number of different productions in multiple capacities: as an actor, director, playwright, assistant stage manager, and props assistant. I made a rock that’s still used in many theatre glendon productions for a production of the french play, Les Disputes, acted in two theatre glendon mainstage productions: Vinegar Tom and a loose adaptation of Marat Sade called Move(me)ant set during the occupy movement in the U.S, acted in two glendon student theatre festival plays, directed a scene study of Eugene Ionesco’s The Chairs, and last year I wrote and directed a glendon student theatre festival play called Waiting. I also write plays, short stories, and poetry and some of my writing has been performed at community open mic and poetry slam events. I’m also trying to self-teach myself screenplay writing which I made my first attempt at as part of a film class at York University this past summer.

Learning more about this organization has been a wonderful  discovery and I’m looking forward to being a part of the Shakespeare In Action team. Follow me on twitter: @rosiemay_r and check out my writing, arts and culture blog:


Featured Intern – Hannah

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Hello fellow Shakespeare Fans!

My name is Hannah and I was born and raised in Ottawa! (We will leave all hockey debates for another time.) I will be one of the production and admin interns for Shakespeare In Action.

One of my first introductions to Shakespeare would be when my mom took me to see the 2000 production of Hamlet at Stratford staring Paul Gross (Growing up I enjoyed watching Paul Gross as a kick butt Mountie on the TV series “Due South”.) Saying that I fell in love with theatre would be an understatement. The amazing sets and costumes with incredible actors transporting you into this new world, this gal was hooked. I started taking acting classes at the local theatre school and went from there. I attended Canterbury Arts High School for drama then followed my passion by attending the Ryerson Theatre School in Toronto for theatre production. I recently graduated Ryerson with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Theatre Production and a minor in Marketing.

Three fun facts about me: I am the middle child of three girls, I love to draw and I am a smidge of a comic book nerd. I am thrilled to join SIA for this fun season and look forward to learning more about the Bard!

What if Shakespeare…had the world’s worst CAT?

I cannot choose: sometime he angers me /With telling me of the mouldwarp and the ant, /Of the dreamer Merlin and his prophecies, /And of a dragon and a finless fish, /A clip-wing’d griffin and a moulten raven, /A couching lion and a ramping cat. [1] Some, that are mad if they behold a cat; /And others, when the bagpipe sings i’ the nose, /Cannot contain their urine. [2] I could endure any thing before but a cat, and now he’s a cat to me. [3] civet is of a baser birth than tar. [4] You fur your gloves with reason. [5]

Purr! the cat is gray. [6] Like the poor cat i’ the adage. [7] Since we have locks to safeguard necessaries, /And pretty traps to catch the petty thieves. [8] If the cat will after kind [9], pray you, sir, use the carp as you may. [10]

The cat, with eyne of burning coal, /Now crouches fore the mouse’s hole; [11] Yet, foul night-waking cat, he doth but dally. [12] Come on your ways; open your mouth; here is that which will give language to you, cat: open your mouth. [13] The cat will mew, and dog will have his day. [14]

A pox on him, he’s a cat still. [15] Hang off, thou cat, thou burr! vile thing, let loose, /Or I will shake thee from me like a serpent! [16] Zounds … a cat, to scratch a man to death! […] Why the devil came you between us? I was hurt under your arm. [17]

Shakespeare re-arranged by Zhan Zhang.


1) Henry IV, Part I [III. 1.1693-1698]

2) Merchant of Venice [IV. 1. 1980]

3) All’s Well That Ends Well [IV. 3. 2320]

4) As You Like It [III. 2. 1180]

5) Troilus and Cressida [II. 2. 1028]

6) King Lear [III. 6. 2049]

7) Macbeth [I. 7. 522]

8) Henry V [I. 2. 321]

9) As You Like It [III. 2. 1213]

10) All’s Well That Ends Well [V. 2. 2636]

11) Pericles [III. 0. 1123]

12) Rape of Lucrece 605

13) Tempest [II. 2. 1171]

14) Hamlet [V, 1.3638]

15) All’s Well That Ends Well [IV. 3. 2357]

16) Midsummer Night’s Dream [III. 2.1303]

17) Romeo and Juliet [III. 1. 1605-1609]

Featured Intern – Vineeta Moraes

Hello everyone! My name is Vineeta (I also go by Vee), and I’m one of the production and admin interns for Shakespeare In Action. I’m fresh out of UofT this June with a BA in English, and minors in Music and Book & Media Studies.

It’s safe to say that I’m a complete artsy, with theatre being no exception. My first and most memorable experience with the Bard occurred when I was 8 – I received an illustrated Shakespeare book for Christmas with paper doll cutouts. Paper actors deserve a fitting set, so I gathered some cardboard, markers, glue, and voilà ~ an Elizabethan theatre in the living room! Over the years, I’ve fostered my love of Shakespeare with that same childhood spark of curiosity and wonder. I learned Romeo and Juliet, Macbeth, The Merchant of Venice, and Hamlet in high school. And university brought an even wider variety of works: from mischievous fairies and Roman generals, to Much Ado About Nothing.

Here are some more random facts about me…I’m a book nerd, musician and part-time piano teacher. I love to write, sing, and recently got into voice acting (hurrah for youtube experiments ^.^)

I’m happy to be on board this 2012/13 season for SIA, and I can’t wait to learn more about the ongoings of a professional theatre company!

Featured Intern: Zhan Zhang

My name is Zhan Zhang, an Arts Management student from U of T Scarborough Campus. I love all kinds of arts, and I like the cultural diversity in Toronto.

I have been volunteering for various cultural organizations including Toronto Fringe Festival, Women in Film and Television, Canadian Film Center, and many many others. I have also been doing internship with Toronto Outdoor Art Exhibition, Toronto LGBT Film Festival, and the 16th Beijing Coating exhibition.

I am so glad to be able to contribute to Shakespeare in Action and explore the sector of theater production and programming.

So hope the SIA team have a fantastic year, and good luck to all the interns and volunteers ~

Featured Intern – David Windrim

Willkommen, bienvenue, welcome! My name is David Windrim, and I am a recent addition to the Shakespeare In Action family. Like any situation where a long-absent relative turns up out of nowhere, I’m therefore expected (and happy!) to tell enough about myself that it becomes clear I’m not a charlatan here to steal the family inheritance. (Which I imagine is the performance rights to the collected works of Shakespeare, also known as A Gigantic Tree Of Money. Seriously, everything here is made of gold-plated diamonds. Or at least, based on the work these people do, it really ought to be – somebody extravagantly wealthy who’s still reading this entry, you know what to do. Have your butler(s) contact me.)

Right – this here on the left is me, looking essentially as I do now except for a) less hair, b) somewhat shorter and c) far less happy – for what did I know of Shakespeare then? If all the world’s a stage, and each person’s acts thereupon comprise seven ages, here I was merely a literary caterpillar, somewhere in between

the infant,
Mewling and puking in the nurse’s arms […]
[and] the whining schoolboy with his satchel
And shining morning face, creeping like snail
Unwillingly to school.

                   (As You Like It, II.vii.142-46)

I started reading quickly thereafter, acting after that, and in my time have played parts ranging from Snoopy (complete with Sopwith camel) to Macbeth (complete with violent executions) in a variety of settings. I’ve even had the prior opportunity to do some work interning and training at the Tarragon Theater and Stratford Shakespeare Festival.

Ultimately, however, the written word and the lonely scholar’s desk called to me more than the stage. I’ve worked for my Bachelor’s Degree in English, Theatre and a Neuroscience minor at McGill – no, the combination makes no sense to me either – and my Bachelor’s Degree in Education and Master’s Degree in Literature at the University of Toronto, where I’m taking more classes this fall while trying to help the SIA Team save civilization, education and every student in Ontario, one sonnet at a time. I’m a jack of all trades that don’t require me to pick up anything heavy – “Heaven forfend! I would not kill [my] soul” with that kind of thing. I’ve tutored, taught, workshopped, proofed, prepped, served, edited and facilitated across many an office floor and classroom, and have the tiny paper-cut scars to prove it.

All the way through, Shakespeare has been one of my foundational influences. His “Sonnet 116” was the first poem I ever memorized – just ask me in person, I’ll prove it! – and his plays are renowned among people who study them for casually, brilliantly, beautifully breaking rules of narrative and language that would make other playwrights seem like dreadful hacks even for trying.

“A play can’t really support that many mixed metaphors, and if there are far too many characters the audience will barely care about any of them,” someone will quite reasonably say.

“Well, Shakespeare does it in <Play X>.”

“Yes, but he’s Shakespeare.” In the game of literary technique, he turned on God Mode long ago and gave himself infinite ammo. The ammo is brilliance. This metaphor could use more ammo.

More importantly, the world could use more Shakespeare. In any one of his plays, his words and stories are variously compassionate without being condescending and critical without being cruel; he writes out verbal fireworks on top of a rigorously exacting structure, capturing all the complex, exciting passionate action of history and myth without ever portraying his characters as more or less than wonderfully, often frustratingly human. All this has made the plays survive where many, many other authors’ work died with them, challenging and thrilling theater professionals and audiences for centuries – if nothing else, while watching a Shakespeare play you can always be aware that you’re sharing in an experience that people of your age, whatever that might be, have been enjoying since before we knew the Earth revolved around the Sun.

If anything I do here can at all assist the hard-working, exceptional people behind this organization in expanding and continuing their efforts to give everyone the chance to truly benefit from exposure to Shakespeare, then I’ll have done something worthwhile. Albeit that “to climb steep hills / Require slow pace at first”, I’ll be here learning what I can and applying what I know for the next while. See you next Tuesday, where I’ll be writing the next “What If Shakespeare Were A…” post. Until then, may your week be full of neatly resolved marriage plots and crews of dimwitted peasants making elaborate jokes about animal husbandry. Just like the Bard intended.

A Fun Photo Friday!

Introducing: the office antics of Shakespeare in Action!

With the school year almost done, we thought we’d share a few of the most memorable moments at the Shakespeare in Action office from the past year.

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Just imagine, if we can have this much fun in our office… how do kids and teens handle all the fun we throw at them in camp?

Register now for a guaranteed summer of fun- these testimonials say it all!

“We love Shakespeare. Thanks for the camp. It was fun. And that is the end.”
Nigel & Marielle Pynn-Coztes – Age 10 & 7

“I think its great fun, I’m more confident with everything” Jessie Marshall-Sheppard – age 8

“This camp was sweet I really enjoyed it. The costumes ruled.” Matthew Benedict – Age 10

Check out the Shakespeare Camp for Kids and Teens

Meet the SIA Team: Stephanie, Fearless Intern

Stephanie, Fearless Intern and Friend of Giant Mounty Bears

My name is Stephanie.  I come to Toronto from both coasts of Canada.  I grew up in beautiful Vancouver, BC, then went off to university at Mount Allison in Sackville, New Brunswick.  When it comes to theatre, I’ve done it all, from acting in a touring bilingual troupe to directing musicals, stage managing outdoor Shakespeare, sound design, painting sets, teaching and running front of house! My love of Shakespeare is matched only by my love of Canadian theatre. I am thrilled to be in Toronto soaking up all the theatre this city has to offer, and to be puttering around the Shakespeare in Action lair, helping out in any way I can.  A random fact about myself is I spent a year in France teaching English, and taught my students all sorts of Shakespearean curse words as part of their English lessons. They loved it!

Meet the SIA Team: Tyler, Fearless Intern

Tyler, Fearless Intern and Cool Hat-Wearer

Tyler is of Métis/Cree descent, from the community of Faust, Alberta.  He was adopted into a military family at birth; and grew up in various places across Canada as well as Germany.  He graduated from the University of Toronto, specializing in Aboriginal studies and English Literature. In his spare time Tyler enjoys writing and performing poetry and prose. When not in his spare time, Tyler would rather be writing for theatre. A random fact about Tyler is that he can recite whole scenes to a lot of science fiction movies.  Sometimes he can recite the whole movie (We will test this claim, Tyler!).

Meet the SIA Team: Meaghan, Fearless Intern

Meaghan, Fearless Intern

Meet Meaghan, the first of our fabulous interns:

My name is Meaghan and I am originally from Fredericton, New Brunswick.  I have a BA in English and Drama from Mount Allison University. Children’s theatre is my passion and I have been teaching and directing for many years.  A random fact about myself is that I get choked up watching every single Heritage Minute, whether or not a segment is actually sad or just about the invention of basketball.