Last week we got to know Paul Jennings, the actor playing Petruchio in our up-coming production of Taming of the Shrew. This week, we’re checking in with Kim Saunders, who will be playing Katherina and making her San Francisco Theater Pub debut.
So, who are you in a hundred words or less!
I am a native New Yorker and a city girl. My heart belongs to the theatre and has for as long as I can remember. I adore animals and share my home with a cat named Pyewacket and my wonderful husband Ron Talbot (Ed. Note: Ron is playing Gremio in this production). I love being busy and normally will be directing, choreographing, performing and coaching several projects at the same time
And how did you get involved with Theater Pub?
I was lucky enough to be cast at Custom Made Theatre Company in a production of Merchant of Venice. Having made friends with several people in the cast they took me to see last year’s production of Measure for Measure and I loved the entire concept of theatre in a bar! It reminded a bit of the NY Renaissance Faire and murder mysteries but with an amazing script.
What’s got you excited about working here?
So many things! The script, the people I am working with, the role I play and performing in an environment where anything can happen.
What’s got you worried?
The final monologue is so well known and can be interpreted in many ways. I hope that I am able to interpret it so the audience can understand Katherine’s point of view.
Have you ever been in this play (Shrew) before?
What’s your history with this show?
I have always loved this show and the witty repartee between Kate and Petruchio. I have auditioned for it several times but have always been called back for Bianca. Having already done Beatrice in Much Ado About Nothing, this seems like a natural progression and I am excited to take it on!
Shrew is considered controversial- why do you think that is?
The true question is: who tames who? Shakespeare chose to make his heroines remarkable women; if the shrew is truly tamed at the end you have then forced a square peg into a round hole. I don’t think that is what Shakespeare intended. I believe in the end they both have found love and a true partnership. If anything these two are now a force to be reckoned with against the world!
Tell us about your character- what do you love about them?
I love the sparing between my Katherine and Petruchio as well as the ability to use all the physical elements that bring these two to life.
What do you hate about them?
I always want to find the humanity in my characters. How did they become who they are before the play has begun? When playing such a strong character it is sometimes hard for the audience to see the hurt and vulnerability that has brought them to where they are when you (the audience) first meets them.
What do you see as the biggest challenge?
Back to….the final monolgue. Everyone knows it and already has an opinion.
When you go about creating a role, what’s your process, in a nutshell? How do find a way into a character, particularly one written so long ago?
For me listening and working off other actors, as well as the director’s vision are my favorite ways of finding my way into creating a role. Also many hints are in the text and also in the pauses thanks to the verse! I have several acting techniques in my toolbox if I need them as well.
What do you think this play has for a modern audience?
Hopefully a great deal of laughter and maybe a new take on the show to start a new conversation!
A lot of famous lines in Shrew- what’s your favorite one?
“If I be waspish best beware my sting.”
A large selection of beers at our bar- what’s your favorite beer?
They keep adding new ones so I just want to keep trying new ones!
Don’t miss Kim, and the rest of this fantastic cast, in Taming of the Shrew, which plays four nights only- March 18, 19, 25 and 27, at 8 PM at the Cafe Royale. No reservations necessary as admission is free (with a suggested five dollar donation at the door), but get there early as we tend to fill up!