"Everyone knows Romeo and Juliet are going to die," says Glenser about the well known Shakespeare play, "but to sit down and see a play where you don't really know where it's headed is exciting." In her interview with Publications Coordinator Mary Yoder-Anderson, Glenzer discusses the excitement of putting on Shakespeare not all people are familiar with. This season Glenzer is playing Goneril in King Lear; Maria in Twelfth Night; Mistress Overdone, Francesca, and Friar Peter in Measure for Measure; and the Duchess of York and Green in Richard II.
Yoder-Anderson: You have done previous seasons with the ASC, what makes you especially excited about this Summer/Fall Season?
Glenzer: This is the first season where two of the shows were unfamiliar to me. In the past seasons I’ve known the other shows well, and in many cases, performed in them before. I went into Romeo and Juliet and The Winter’s Tale (2007 Summer/Fall Season), having played different roles in those performances before. I came into this season, never have seen Measure for Measure and I’ve learned a lot going through it. I’ve seen Richard II, but never performed it. I am actually playing five different people in Richard II, which should be a great learning experience. There is a great cast this season. There is a mix of new actors and returning actors who I’ve really wanted to work with.
Which character do you find the most challenging to play?
I thought Goneril, who has a lot going on inside and has a more complex personality, would be the most challenging. But, I love working with Jim [Warren] and he made her much easier to understand and less difficult to play than I was expecting. Mistress Overdone in Measure for Measure has been a difficult part. She’s only in two scenes, but within those two scenes I have to come up with that bawdy humor while telling the story of a town who has sort of lost themselves. Generally I do love to play those bold characters. I had a great time playing Lady Would-be (from Ben Jonson’s Volpone) last Renaissance Season.
Why should young people these days be interested in Shakespeare? Which of these plays do you think the younger generation would enjoy most?
Something is to be said about the characters this season. King Lear is full of family problems and a bunch of deaths. Everyone has a family and many can identify with fighting with sisters, fighting with your dad, and wanting your family to be something that its not. I find Twelfth Night extremely funny and consider it to be one of the best sitcoms ever written. Measure for Measure is also funny and keeps you on the edge of your seats. Everyone knows Romeo and Juliet are going to die, but to sit down and see a play where you don’t really know where it’s headed is exciting. It will keep you guessing. Richard II is full of history, and why not take in a little history that is entertaining?
Everything that really cuts to the truth of what makes us laugh and feel for each other can be found in Shakespeare. Anything that is confusing about life is covered. Today, people make mistakes, and to see that they are not alone and someone that long ago felt the same way they did and were able to make it entertaining is an amazing thing.
What are your future plans?
I’m a gypsy. I don’t have any real plans, my plan after this interview is to go to Coffee on the Corner and get a coffee. I adore working here and not only does this company do something absolutely amazing and special, but Staunton is wonderful in embracing the ASC. I have no clue what my plans are after this season but if they want me, I’m here. I would love to have another shot at the Actors Renaissance Season, which is a truly unique experience.
Previously with ASC Glenzer has played Lady Macbeth and Hecate in Macbeth; Lady Would-be in Volpone; Queen and Soothsayer in Cymbeline; Katherine and Friar Bernadine in The Jew of Malta; Hecate and Francisca in The Witch; Paulina and Time in The Winter's Tale; Nurse, Lady Montague and Chorus in Romeo and Juliet; Princess of France in Love's Labour's Lost; Octavia and Iras in Antony and Cleopatra; Mercutio in Romeo and Juliet; Jaques in As You Like It; Clown in The Winter's Tale; and Ghost of Christmas Present in An American Christmas Carol, 1852.
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Actors' Renaissance Season