ARTIST PROFILE: Madison Kisst, The Rover’s Don Antonio, Much Ado’s George Seacoal

Meet Madison Kisst, Margaret/George Seacoal in Much Ado About Nothing, Caithness/Apparition in Macbeth, and Hellena/Don Antonio in The Rover for the 2015 Santa Cruz Shakespeare Summer Festival.

Santa Cruz Shakespeare Madison Kisst

Where are you from originally? Where do you call home now?

I am originally from a small town in the California’s Central Valley called Escalon, but I currently call Sin City home! I am attending grad school in Las Vegas, Nevada.

 How did you come to be a part of Santa Cruz Shakespeare’s 2015 festival? Do you have a history with us, or is this your first time?

This is my very first time being a part of the festival.

What has your experience been like working with Santa Cruz Shakespeare this season?

I am having an incredible time working with this company and spending the summer in beautiful Santa Cruz. This is my first time doing Theatre in rep like this, and I’m finding that it’s truly an amazing experience to get to jump from character to

Much Ado About Nothing Santa Cruz Shakespeare

Madison Kisst and Steve Pickering in Much Ado About Nothing 2015. Photo by rr jones.

character and play to play every day, and often multiple times a day. There is so much learning that happens from both doing such a thing, and watching my fellow actors do it too. This is truly a company teeming with talent, from the production team to the actors- not to mention, a downright fun group of people to be around.

 What is your favorite Shakespeare play? Why?

This is an extremely difficult question because every time I start working on one of Shakespeare’s plays I start to think it is my favorite. The two that I think I am the most drawn to and find myself quoting the most are As You Like It and Hamlet.

What is your favorite Shakespearean insult?

I’ll stick to our season this summer and give an admiring shout out to Beatrice in Much Ado About Nothing, for her fabulously witty digs and heartfelt railing. In particular:

Darek Riley and Madison Kisst in Santa Cruz Shakepseare's production of The Rover, 2015.

Darek Riley and Madison Kisst in Santa Cruz Shakepseare’s production of The Rover, 2015.

“O, that I were a man! I would eat his heart in the marketplace.”

“But manhood is melted into curtsies, valor into compliment, and men are only turned into tongue and trim ones too.”

Why should people come to see Santa Cruz Shakespeare’s plays this summer?

People should come to see our plays this summer because there is no other experience that I can think of that is like this one. Watching live storytelling, outside, amongst hundreds of other people- just like these plays were viewed when Shakespeare wrote them. Once you see one, I would bet you’ll never miss a season!

Tickets on sale now for the 2015 season, which features three outdoor productions, starting with the wickedly romantic Shakespeare comedy Much Ado About Nothing, opening July 3; followed by David Ives’s modern adaptation of the wickedly hilarious 17th century farce, The Liar, opening July 24; and Shakespeare’s wicked tragedy, Macbeth, opening August 7. Plus, SCS continues the tradition of its intern-showcasing Fringe production with four performances of the wickedly festive comedy The Rover, starting August 18.


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