Title: On her own terms
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00099315/00001
 Material Information
Title: On her own terms preparation & performance of the role of Katherine in William Shakespeare's The taming of the shrew
Physical Description: v, 22 leaves : col. photos. ; 28 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Griffin, Katrina Renee
Publication Date: 2004
Copyright Date: 2004
Subject: Theatre thesis M.F.A
Dissertations, Academic -- Theatre -- UF
Genre: bibliography   ( marcgt )
theses   ( marcgt )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )
Thesis: Performance option in lieu of thesis (M.F.A.)--University of Florida, 2004.
Bibliography: Includes bibliographical references.
Statement of Responsibility: by Katrina Renee Griffin.
General Note: Printout.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00099315
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: alephbibnum - 003497256
oclc - 64771608


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Summary of Performance Option in Lieu of Thesis
Presented to the Graduate School of the University of Florida
in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the
Degree of Master of Fine Arts




I would like to dedicate this document first to God for giving me the strength to

live and to my parents, Yardley and Kitty Griffin, for their undying love and



I wish to thank my graduate class for being the most amazing group of people
with whom I've had the pleasure of working for the past three eventful years.
Best wishes to you all.

I wish to thank Dr. Judith W. B. Williams for giving me the opportunity to
perform such an amazing role.

I wish to thank Dr. Mikell Pinkney for teaching me how to perform Shakespeare
and motivating me each and every time I wanted to quit.

Finally, I wish to thank Dr. David Shelton for teaching me the three fundamentals
of acting: objectives, tactics, and clarity in everything.


DEDICATION................ .. ....... - -1

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS. ............. ....... ...... .. ........... -----111

ABSTRACT ................... ..............----

EVALUATION.................. ...............

BIBLIOGRAPHY............... ...............2

APPENDIX A ................. .................23.......... .....


APPENDIX B .................. ..................25...............


SIGNATURE PAGE................... ......... ........... ...........30

Summary of Performance Option in Lieu of Thesis
Presented to the Graduate School of the University of Florida
in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the
Degree of Master of Fine Arts



Katrina Renee Griffin

August 2004

Chair: David Shelton
Co-chair: Yanci Bukovec
Major Department: Theater and Dance

This document examines the creative process utilized before, during, and after

the portrayal of Katherine in the University of Florida's production of The Taming of

the Shrew in April 2004. It covers the period between the play's selection and the

culminating performances.

The analysis discusses the preliminary field of research as well as the

extensive textual analysis used to approach the role. It chronicles the actor's

development in the rehearsal process and gives a final self-evaluation of the progress

made in rehearsal and performance.

In choosing the plays for the 2003-2004 season, the School of Theater

and Dance followed several guidelines. The play selection committee

comprised of Theater and Dance Faculty members, one graduate representative,

and one undergraduate representative met over a period of several weeks to

discuss the plays to be considered. Several thesis candidates proposed plays in

which they would like to act. One of the major challenges that faced the play

selection committee in choosing a season was the construction of a new Theater

and Dance facility which seemed to take most of the attention. Plans for a

season were held off until word was received as to when the building would be

completed. With time, space, design, and budget as deciding factors-- the

committee released the upcoming season: a remount of Lavenrder Lizards and

Lilac Lanldmines: Laryla's Dreaml, a 24-hour play festival, and Carbaret for fall

2003, with Hendeka, Big Love, and The Tam1ingI of the Shrew to follow in the

spring of 2004.

The thesis s candidates were given the opportunity to select their top three

thesis choices and present them to performance coordinator, Dr. David Shelton;

he discussed the actors' choices with the faculty and made a final

decision. The actor submitted Bianca in The Tamingr~ of the Shrewv as a first

choice because of a deep interest in Shakespeare and the power of the language.

As a second choice the actor submitted Veronica in La~ende~r Lizardzs andu Ldacl

Lar~ndmines, and no role was submitted as a third choice. The faculty members

concluded that the actor would be given her thesis assignment in 7he Taming of

the Shr~ew but recommended the role of Kate instead of Bianca. With much

surprise the actor approached the director, Dr. Judith Williams, to discuss her

options. The actor was interested in the possibilities of performing Kate, yet she

feared the role because she felt that she was inadequate. After much

deliberation the actor accepted the role of Kate and began her journey which she

hoped would lead to a successful performance.

The actor began her research with the playwright, William Shakespeare.

Shakespeare, the English playwright and poet, is recognized in much of the

world as the greatest of all dramatists. He was born and educated in Stratford-

upon-Avon, a town northwest of London, England. His exact birth date is

unrecorded, though scholars speculate that it occurred sometime around April

26, 1564. In 1582 he married Anne Hathaway who bore him several children.

After the birth of his twins, he left his family in Stratford and moved to London

where he worked first as an actor and later as a playwright. Shakespeare was an

actor and dramatist for The Lord Chamberlain's Men, one of two acting troupes

in London during the late 1500's In 1599 he became a shareholding member

with the company which gave him a part of the profits from the productions as

payment. Between 1588 and 1613 Shakespeare is believed to have written 38

plays. His work is commonly grouped in four categories: comedies, histories,

tragedies, and problem plays. The problem plays are those that contain elements

of his tragedies, comedies, and histories; thus, they can't be placed into any one

category. In addition he wrote several poems and a sequence of 154 sonnets

dealing with love, fidelity, mortality, and other topics. Shakespeare's reputation

as a great dramatist did not begin until the late eighteenth century. His

storytelling abilities and well-crafted characters captured the attention of his

audiences, and by the end of the nineteenth century, his reputation as a dramatist

was firmly established. Today Shakespeare is more widely studied and

performed than any other playwright in the Western world.

The Taming of the ShrewY was published in the First Folio in 1623. It has

been speculated that Shakespeare's play was a reworking of an earlier

anonymous work, The Tamin~g o-fA ShrewY. There were two variations to this

basic theory: one, that A Shrew, was based on an earlier play; the other, and more

widely believed, that there was an immediate connection between A Shrew and

The Shirew. Several theories about the relationship between the two plays grew

out of the variations. One theory was that the two plays were the offspring of

the same play. Another theory was that Shakespeare himself had helped write A

Shrew which explains why there were so many parallels between the two plays.

Another theory is that The Shrewu is the prior play, and A Shrew was developed

from it. Scholars have since supported this theory by speculating that A ShrewY

was an acting company's effort to put together from memory a script that was

perhaps sold to another company, a practice that was not uncommon during the

Elizabethain period. In spite of all of these theories, much is left unexplained,

and most are based on assumptions rather than hard evidence. In the end the

exact source from which The Taminrg oft he Shr-ewl was derived is unknown.

Largely because of the themes addressed in 7he Tammllrg of the Shrewv--

marriage, womanly duty, and the effect of social roles on individual happiness--

the play has experienced great popularity through the years, though its exact

performance history cannot be traced. With the reopening of the playhouses

after the Restoration, it was one of the classic plays regularly performed by

Thomas Killigrew's King's Company. Shortly after, Killigrew had the play

reconstructed by the actor-playwright John Lacy, who retitled it Sawllly the Scol

and set it in contemporary London. He changed Katherine to Margaret and

renamed all the main characters except Petruchio. He extensively modernized

the language and starred in it as Petruchio's servant Grumio, renamed Sauny

Critics agree that Lacy's version includes a great deal of new material, but the

play is recognizably The Tairnrlg ofthe Shrew,. Shortly after, it went through a

series of changes. By 1715 London stages were presenting two farces based

entirely on the Christopher Sly episode both called The Cobbler ofPr~eston.

Almost twenty years later a version of the play was produced at Drury Lane with

the title A Cure for a Scold. In 1756 David Garrick revised and revived it as

Cartherinre ald Petrurchio with much success. It was not until 1 844 that the

original text, including the scenes with Christopher Sly, returned to the London

stage. This production, directed by J. R. Planache, also marked the return to

Shakespeare staging; the play was reportedly mounted without scenery on an

open stage with hangings and screens. After this production the original text,

though often omitting Christopher Sly and often with a significant cutting of

Katherine's fmnal speech, survived in theater more or less in its totality. In the

twentieth century, Sybil Thorndike and Lewis Casson and Alfred Lunt and Lynn

Fontanne were notable successes in the play. In 1966, Franco Zeffirelli directed

a film version starring Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor. Since the early

1900's directors have taken more creative approaches to the play's production.

In 1977 Michael Bogdanov, who directed for the Royal Shakespeare Company,

opened a version in which the action was actually a dream of Christopher Sly.

An usher he knocked down at the beginning was Paola Dionisotti, who played

Kate to Sly's Petruchio. In 1987 Jonathan Miller directed a version of the play

which omitted the Christopher Sly induction and focused the play on the world

through Kate's eyes. His production confronted his audiences with the domestic

issues that are raised by the taming story and Kate's apparent submission at the

play's end. Miller set the play in Elizabethan London and cast as Kate the

famous British actress, Fiona Shaw. In the summer of 2003, The Globe Theater

staged a well-received all-female version of the play The timeless storyline

and well-crafted characters are just two important reasons why the play is

presented in many educational, regional, and professional theaters across the

world today.

The Tamning of the Shrewy opens with an Induction in which Christopher

Sly, a beggar and drunkard, is tossed out of an alehouse because of his

disruptive behavior and falls asleep in front of a Lord's house. Sly is later

convinced by the Lord and his servants that he is a nobleman who has been sick

for several years. A group of players are performing a play later that evening

Traditionally, an induction is an introduction or preface to the action of a play,

but it is also used to bring forward facts or instances to prove a general

statement. Shakespeare does both and much more with his induction

introducing to his audience several key themes such as identity, disguise,

illusion, and reality, which are developed fully in the play through the main


There are several themes and/or mnotifs Shrew discusses, many of which

are developed in later works by Shakespeare. Disguise, domestication, marriage

as an economic institution, and the effect of social roles on individual happiness

all come to the forefront by the play's end. Disguise positions itself

prominently in the play: Sly is dressed as a lord in the induction; Lucentio

dresses as a Latin tutor, Cambio, in an attempt to gain access into Baptista's

household; Tranio disguises himself as Lucentio, while Hortensio dresses as

Litio, a music tutor, and the pedant dresses as Vincentio, Lucentio's father.

These disguises allow the characters to step over barriers in social position and

class, and for a time each of the disguised characters is successful The play,

therefore, poses the question of whether the clothes, or what is on the outside,

makes the man and implies that a person can change his or her role by putting on

new clothes giving them a new identity. The ultimate answer in the play is no.

The motif of domestication is depicted in the play' s title by the word,

"taming." A great deal of the action consists of Petruchio's attempts to cure

Katherine of her wild and often outlandish behavior. Katherine is referred to as

a wild animal that must be domesticated. Petruchio considers himself, and the

other men consider him, to be a tamer who must train his wife, and most of the

men secretly suspect that Kate's wild nature will prove too much for him to

handle. The first instance ofKatherine's untamablity becomes apparent to the

audience when Hortensio introduces Petruchio as the man who will "woo curst

Katherine." Gremio responds by asking Hortensio if he has told Petruchio all

of Katherine's faults, a question that reveals Gremio's doubt that Petrucbio will

be able to tame Katherine. After their wedding Petruchio and Katherine's

relationship becomes defined by Petruchio's public attempt to domesticate her

Katherine protests against her husband's desire to leave their wedding without

attending the reception. Petruchio appears to give in to Katherine's wishes but

not without delivering an insightful monologue. He starts by commanding his

attendants to go forward at the bride's command and tells them to enjoy

themselves, to "feast, revel, and domineer." He charges that Kate must stay

with him, forbidding her to challenge or rise against him; he will be master over

what is his. He defines what Kate is to him in an attempt to make her seem like

a subordinate creature who will in time move and speak as he wishes. His

attempt to further domesticate Kate occurs when the couple returns to his house,

and he forbids her eating. At the end of the scene, he outlines how he will play

the game of domesticating, or taming, Katherine. He proclaims that until Kate

gives in completely, she will be starved, receive no sleep, and he will find fault

with absolutely everything until be curbs her "mad and headstrong humor."

The question of whether or not Katherine is tamed by Petruchio's attempts is left

unanswered but open to individual interpretation.

Inner emotional desire plays a secondary role in The Tamin~g of the

Shrew's exploration of love. The play heavily emphasizes the economic

aspects of marriage and how it is not an act of love rather a sort of business

transaction. The play explores romantic relationships from a social perspective,

presenting the institution of courtship and marriage versus the inner passions of

lovers. While the husband and wife defmne their relationship after the wedding,

the courtship relationship is negotiated between the future husband and the

father of the future wife. Hortensio expresses his desire that Petruchio wed

Katherine but does not hesitate to make it clear that marriage to her includes a

healthy dowry. Petruchio's initial interest in her is due to what he will gain, not

his desire to be married. Baptista confirms that Petruchio will receive twenty

thousand crowns and half of his lands after Baptista' s death. Baptista acts as a

merchant, allowing Tranio and Gremio to place bids on Bianca. Tranio's bid of

several elaborate homes and two thousand gold coins a year from land

ownership proves to be more substantial than Gremio's offering; thus, Baptista

allows Tranio, disguised as Lucentio, to marry Bianca provided that all he has

promised becomes her property. Marriage becomes a transaction involving the

transfer of money and goods. Lucentio ultimately wins Bianca's heart, but he is

given permission to marry her only after be is able to convince Baptista that he

is fabulously rich. Had Hortensio, a third suitor to Bianca, offered more money,

he would have married her regardless of her love for Lucentio.

Each character in the play occupies a specific social position that carries

with it certain expectations as to how that person should behave. For instance,

Lucentio occupies the role of a wealthy young student, Tranio that of a servant,

and Bianca and Katherine the roles of upper-class maidens-in-waiting. At the

very least they are supposed to occupy these roles, but as the play unfolds,

Katherine wants nothing to do with her social role, and her shrewishness is a

result of her frustration concerning her position. She faces the cold and harsh

disapproval of everyone around her because she does not live up to the

expectations placed on her which dictate that a woman is supposed to be

submissive and unheard. Due to this alienation, she becomes miserably

unhappy. Kate is only one of the characters in the play who attempt to deny

their socially-defined roles: Lucentio and Hortensio transform themselves into

working-class tutors in order to gain the favor of Baptista and access to Bianca;

Tranio transforms himself into a wealthy young aristocrat to assist his master in

his plight; the pedant acts as Vincentio, a wealthy merchant of Pisa. Ultimately,

society's happiness depends upon everyone playing their prescribed roles.

Through the method of disguise, the play entertains the idea that a

person's apparel determines his or her social position. A servant may put on the

clothes of his master, but in the end, he will always be a servant, as in the case

of Tranio. Likewise, Lucentio has to reveal his disguise to his father and

Baptista before he can move forward with Bianca. Kate's development in the

play is determined by her gradual adaptation to her social role as wife, though it

is often argued whether she truly accepts this role. She complies with

Petruchio's degree of taming because she know that if she accepts her social

obligations as wife, she will be happier. It is the opinion of the actor that the

humor in the play stems from the crossing of social roles by those who take on a

disguise or clever lie. In the end the order that has been established before the

play's beginning has been reestablished, and those who align themselves with

this order are content.

Widely reputed throughout Padua to be a shrew, Katherine is foul-

tempered and sharp-tongued at the start of the play. She publicly insults and

degrades the men around her, and she is prone to wild displays of anger, during

which she may physically attack whomever enrages her Her character

unfolding ultimately depends on the director's and actor's approach to the

character. Though many of the other characters simply believe Katherine to be

ill-tempered, it is likely that her unpleasant behavior stems from unhappiness.

The actor believes that Kate acts as a shrew because she is miserable and

desperate. Baptista puts Katherine on display in the street in front of his home,

asking if any man desires to marry her. Katherine is enraged because she had no

desire to fit into the mold her father and society have igned for her. There are

several other possible sources of Katherine's unhappiness. She expresses

jealousy about her father's treatment of her sister, but her jealousy may also

stem from feelings about her own desirability. Prior to meeting Petruchio,Kate

fears that she may never have a husband. The actor believes that in her heart,

Kate has every desire to be courted and ultimately wedded but on her own

terms. Overall, Katherine feels out of place. Because of her intelligence and

independence, she is unwilling to play the role of dutiful daughter. She clearly

detests the expectations that she should obey her father and show grace and

courtesy towards her suitors. On the other hand, Katherine must acknowledge

that given the rigidity of the world around her, her only hope to find a secure

and happy place in the world is to succumb to the expectations and find a

husband. Her action early on appears cyclical, the angrier she becomes, the less

likely it seems she will be able to adapt to her prescribed role, and the more

alienated she becomes, the more her anger grows.

Despite the humiliations and deprivations that Petalchio adds to her life,

the actor found it easy to understand why Katherine might succumb to marry a

man like him. In their first conversation Petruchio establishes that he is her

intellectual and verbal equal, making him, on some level, an exciting change

from the easily-intimidated men who normally surround her His treatment of

Kate is designed to show her that she has no choice but to adapt to her social

role as wife. This adaptation must be attractive to her on some level since even

if she dislikes the role or wife, playing it means she can command respect and

consideration from others rather than suffer the treatment she receives as a

shrew. Kate becomes the one with the power. Katherine's compliance with

Petruchio's "taming" is more rational by the play's end than it seems at the

play's beginning; by the end she gains a position and a voice that she was

previously denied

After completing the research and basic analysis, the actor felt nervous

and unsure about whether or not she would be able to adequately perform the

role of Kate. She doubted her ability to play such a complex character. She

began her process by scanning the text, the most important skill necessary for

working with heightened language. This process helps bring clarity to the

performer and audience. Shakespearean language is usually written in blank

verse with lines comprised of ten syllables. This line structure is called iambic

pentameter. A~n iamb is a foot of two syllables, the first unstressed and the

second stressed. An iambic pentameter is a line of verse that consists of five

metric feet, which equals ten syllables per line. The actor scored her script with

the appropriate markings and conducted a more thorough examination of the

text. She referred to C. T. Onion's Shakespleare Glossary many times

throughout the rehearsal period for definitions of words with which she was

unfamiliar. After her initial scanning of the text, the actor explored the vocal

energies of the character, basing her exploration on the Lessac voice system

She typed a separate copy of her script on which she marked the sustainable

vowels and consonants, unsustainable consonants, and tonal energies. The

actor looked over her lines and made vocal choices based on her understanding

of the character and the character's intentions. Through this vocal exploration

the actor hoped to bring a musical quality to her performance.

The actor was somewhat hesitant about working with The TamingR ofthe

Shrew's director, Dr. Judith W. B. Williams. This production would be the

second the actor had done with the director, and the previous production had left

her with several unanswered questions. The actor, however, wNas very excited to

begin rehearsals. The first rehearsal began with an explanation of the directorial

concept. The director began her presentation recounting a vision she had while

on vacation. On her way to south Florida, she noticed the broken line beside her

vehicle on the highway. She quickly imagined cars passing others over this

broken line and placed the idea of the "broken line" within the context of the

play. The director encouraged the actors to look for the "broken line," for sizing

up and passing the competition in an attempt to achieve objectives. She desired

to focus the play on Katherine and Petruchio's relationship, exploring their lives

behind the scenes. The director created a "hot spot" stage right where she

encouraged interaction between the characters in an effort to illuminate certain

aspects of their relationships. She made it clear that Katherine and Petruchio,

Katherine and Bianca, and Katherine and Baptista were to have an

improvisatory moment in the "hot spot"' over the course of the play. The actor

feared that the added bits would take away from the main action. It seemed as if

the director did not trust the audience enough to make educated opinions about

the nature of the play; therefore, she shaped moments she felt would assist the

audience in understanding the story. All of Petruchio's servants were played by

women which the director felt would bring further attention to his disrespectful

treatment of women. In short, the director's concept appeared to be pieced

together without a concrete through line. Several questions were asked in

gaining clarity of the broken line concept, and when these questions went

unanswered or were given responses that did not correlate with the inquiries

made, the actors became bored and restless, all in the first rehearsal. This lack

of interest concerned the actor, especially so early in the process. The actor later

met outside of rehearsal with the director on behalf of the cast and was able to

make some sense of the directorial concept.

After the director attempted to explain the direction in which she wanted

to take the production, the cast began its first reading of the text. To the actor's

surprise, the design staff was not present at the first meeting and did not make

their individual presentations until weeks into the process. The cast never saw

the costume designer's renderings. During the reading the director made cuts to

the script that made little or no sense to the actors. She further explained that

the reasons behind these cuts would become clear once she began blocking the

production. On the second day of rehearsals, the director began blocking the

first half of the play. She failed to address the shaky first reading, how to handle

heightened language, how to understand the text, or the importance of vocal

explorations in bringing clarity to a style that would seem foreign to many

audience members. The lack of attention to the fundamentals of working with

heightened language did not surprise the actor because she was used to the

director seeming to work backwards. The actor realized early on that the

success of the production relied on the core group of actors, most of whom were

graduate students. An extensive amount of work would need to be done outside

of rehearsals, as with any other production, but even more so with a production

on which the director imposed ideas and intentions that were seemingly not

supported by the text

In the rehearsals that followed the actor was frustrated. First, the other

cast members were openly dismissing the notes given by thle director. Though

these notes often lacked clarity, the actor concluded to that her job was to

perform the role given to her to the best of her abilities and most importantly, to

put into practice all that she had learned. Second, the director made arbitrary

changes in the text and its delivery to highlight what she wanted, often omitting

what was seemingly indicated by the playwright. For instance, the director

inserted a scene between Kate and Cressida, Petruchio's dog, during which she

wanted Kate to steal food from the pet. At first the actor resisted the idea of the

improvisation but later embraced it. The actor discovered that she had the

ability to create something out of nothing and could be humorou s at the same


The cast was asked to have their lines and blocking memorized upon

returning from spring break. The actor was excited to begin working without

the script in hand. She began memorizing her lines as soon as the break began

and finished before it ended. Rehearsals after spring break were rocky for the

actor. Though she knew all of her lines, she lacked the assurance and strength

needed to perform. As the actor had many times before, she experienced

problems bringing to life all she had researched. She felt lost and many times

confused about the blocking and her character's motivation. Day in and day out

she worked hard to overcome her fears by re-reading the text, visiting her

research, and meditating. After leaving several wearisome rehearsals she

decided to re-approach the director for assistance. The director assured the actor

that she was on the right track with her interpretation of the character and

recommended that she simply let go of everything that was holding her back.

The actor took this advice and decided to return to her script and search for

things she had overlooked. She created a chart that outlined the character's

objectives and tactics for each scene. The actor kept a copy of this chart with

her to study throughout her day and before each rehearsal. The chart helped the

actor remain connected to the character. Though the actor occasionally had

doubts, she felt progress was being made.

After finally reaching a level of freedom in rehearsals, the actor began to

experience resistance from the director. The director gave several line-readings

in the form of questions: "What if Kate were to say the line like this?" or "What

if Kate were really thinking this?" At first the actor objected to many of the

inquiries. She quickly realized that the only way to get through a rehearsal

without becoming angry was to appease the director in rehearsals and work even

harder outside of rehearsals. The actor's goal became to make choices that were

so clear and purposeful that little room would be left for debate. The actor's

clearer choices proved successful, and the actor began working closely with her

Petruchio to smooth out the rough edges in their relationship. The two worked

extensively on their individual objectives and the possibilities of subtext. They

devised a new approach to a particularly difficult scene and presented it to the

director. The director listened quietly but quickly decided that she did not like

the idea, nor did she care to see it in action during the upcoming rehearsal. The

actor was disappointed by the director's lack ofitrs interest but continued to work

on the through line of the character. She reviewed her script daily, scheduled

sessions outside of rehearsal with the assistant director, and hoped for the best.

During tech week the cast began to work as a cohesive unit. Solo acts

were put on hold as everyone nervously anticipated the production's opening.

Dr. Mikell Pinkney and Professor Yanci Bukovec, members of the performance

faculty, attended a rehearsal, which sent the graduate acting students into a

panic. The first-year graduate students had complained to both professors about

their issues with the production. Instead of focusing on all of the work put into

the production, the actors worried about their individual performances. The

actor was given concrete and encouraging advice from Dr. Pinkney. He

commented on the fact that the actor was vocally strong. He advised that she

command the attention of everyone on stage by using her words as a whip

intended to inflict pain. He also suggested the actor pick an animal to connect

with each time she entered the stage. Dr. Pinkney' s comments and advice

helped the actor more fully embrace her choices and gave her a level of

confidence she had been unable to achieve.

Before the costumes were added to the production, the actor made

several physical choices for the character. The costumes required minor

adjustments as the actor was informed that she would be wearing a corset

underneath dresses with bodices that utilized the same boning as the corset.

Though the double-boning effect created a clean line in the costume, it greatly

restricted the actor's movement and caused some pain to her lower back. To

ease the discomfort, the actor incorporated several deep breathing exercises

learned in her Alexander Technique class. She also used diaphragmatic

breathing to help support her breath while speaking. One aspect of the costume

design that bothered the actor was the style in which she was to wear her hair

Several weeks before the show opened, the actor approached the costume

designer with inquiries concerning her hair. The actor requested her character

wear a wig to avoid any possible damage to her own hair. Two weeks before

the official opening the costume designer had not made any decisions about the

actor's hair; therefore, the actor sought out the advice of the costume design

advisor, Professor Paul Favini. He informed the actor that she would be

provided with a hair piece attached to her own hair, creating a bun effect. The

actor was uncomfortable with the idea due to her experiences in previous

productions. It had been the actor's experience that the designers failed to

consider the differences between African-American and Caucasian hair; thus

African-American actors were given poorly researched directions as to how their

hair should be worn. The actor attempted to explain the basics of African-

American hair care and design to the costumer designer, but the information

seemed to land on uninterested ears. The actor ultimately concluded that her

hair was not so important as the performance itself.

For the actor opening night consisted of nerves and anxiety. Her mother

had flown in from California to see the production, something she had not done

since the actor's second year in undergraduate school. The performance was

going well until Petruchio stepped on the hem of the actor's costume and

unintentionally dropped her as the two were exiting the stage at the final

moment of the play. This mishap embarrassed the actor for a moment but was

quickly replaced by an exhilarating feeling of accomplishment Overall the

actor's performance was well received by the audience. The actor was

congratulated by several faculty members. To the actor's surprise, Dr. Mikell

Pinkney told her she had made him proud, words the actor had never heard him

speak in her entire career at the university. The best compliment the actor

received came from her mother who whispered in the actor's ear half way

through the reception, "You were absolutely stunning." Tlhis compliment

brought the actor to tears because during the entire process, she wondered

whether or not her performance would be respected. The opening night's

performance reinforced the actor's passion for acting and gave her a level of

certainty she carried throughout the remaining performances.

The most challenging part of acting is being able to perform a show

repeatedly as if each performance were the first. The actor applied techniques to

keep her performances exciting and new. On more than one occasion the actor

used emotional recall to place her self in the mindset of the character. In

emotional recall the performer feels a character's emotion by thinking of an

event in his or her life which aroused a similar emotion. On other occasions the

actor excused herself from the cast and crew, found a quiet corner, meditated,

and prayed for peace of mind, heart, and spirit. Clearing her head before

performances helped the actor focus on the task at hand The actor continued to

warm up vocally and physically prior to each performance to ensure that she

would not exhaust herself. To get through the last three shows in July, the actor

simply told herself that she had a job to do, and it included giving the audience

their money's worth. The actor felt she would be doing herself a disservice by

performing at half the level of which she knew she was capable, thus, she

pushed herself through her final curtain call.

Contrary to past experiences, the actor felt she achieved her goals with her

portrayal of Katherine. She felt a sense of accomplishment and pride. One

faculty member told her early on that he felt she was not right for Katherine, that

she was too young and did not have enough life experience or grit to play the

character. Immediately the actor was determined to prove him wrong. This

same faculty member praised her performance after the opening night and

professed that she had made him proud. The actor felt like the rehearsal period

did not prepare her for performance, but the performances prepared her for life

outside of the university setting. She traveled with the production to Athens,

Greece, and was commended by audience members who could barely

understand the language. Though every performance was not perfect, the actor

felt that she did her best. She had the opportunity to perform one of the most

desirable roles of an actor's lifetime. She used the skills taught by her

instructors and was able to make Katherine her own. The actor received

encouraging comments from her peers, students, and theater professionals which

made her feel extremely secure as a performer. If the actor could change

anything about her experience, she would trust herself and believe in her

abilities from the start.

Over the past three years the actor wondered whether or not if at the end

of her experience if she would be able to consider herself a master at acting.

During the past year she questioned whether her thesis role would reflect all of

the work she had put into her education. Though the assignment failed to do so,

the actor feels she is prepared to exit the academic setting, and she hopes to take

all that she has learned into her career.


Barton, John. Playing Shakesp~eare: Anl Actor sr Guride. New York: Random House,


Bean, John C. "Comic Structure and the Humanizing of Kate in Tlhe Taming of the

Shrew." The WZoman'rs Part: Femninrist Criticisml of Shakespearre. Ed. Gayle

Greene, Carolyn Ruth Swift Lenz, and Carol Thomas Neely. Chicago:

University of Illinois Press, 1980.

Bermel, Albert. Shakespeare at the Momnent: Playinlg the Comedies New Hampshire:

Heinemann, 2000.

Dash, Irene G Wooling, Weddinrg, anld Power: Wom11enl in ShaLkespeare s Plarys.

New York: Columbia University Press, 1981.

Dreher, Diane E. Donimtinain anrd Defianr~ce: Father s andu Daurghters inr Sharkespeare.

Lexington: University Press of Kentucky, 1986.

Onions, C.T. A Shakesp~eare Glossat-y. New York: Oxford University Press, 1986.

Rutter, Carol. C/amlorous V'oices: Shakespeare 's Womlen TodayrL. Ed. Faith Evans.

New York: Routledge, Chapman & Hall, 1989.

Shakespeare, William. T~he Taminlg of the Shrew. Ed. Robert Heilman. New York:

Penguin Putnam, 1986.

Thompson, Ann. Feminist Theory and the Editing of Shakespeare." Shakespeare,

Feminismr anld Gender: Critical Essays. Ed. Kate Ched gzay. New York:

Palgrave Press, 2001.



~s: /

'' 6;


University of Floridla
School of Theatre and Dance

The Taming of the Shrewl

Director: Dr. Judith W.B. Williams
Assistant to the Director: Sharon Chudnow **
Scene Designer: Josh Morris
Lighting Designer: Eric Ketchum
Costume Designer: Lauren Rossi
Sound Designer: Keith Taylor
Production Manager: Amber C. Moreland Howell
Stage Manager: Rachel Kahn

Katherine...................................Karn Griffin *
Petruchio....................................Pu McClain
Grumio........................................ar Rohner
e, Baptista......................................art Bantom
. Bianca..................................... ..Lun Roth
-1 Lucentio.....................................os Price
G, Tranio.......................................Kan Kullman
G remio............... .......................ak Molzan
Hortensio................... ...............Aman Doraisingam
Biondello.............. .. ...................usn Gallo
Vincentio ................... ................ ..Raymond Caldwell
Pedant........................................ei Brown
Widow.........................................e Loftus
Julia..........................................enir Swisher
Celia..................... .................... Meai Galler
Hermia. ................... ................... .....Kara Hennessey
Amelia................... ................Bitn Lesavoy
Hermione................... .................Sr Weston
Sophie. ................... ................... ......Nicole Rosner
Cressida................... .................. Lue Cornell
Baptista's Servant/Messenger/Haberdasher....Cam Bulloch
Tailor/Officer. ................ ... ............... Josh Patterson
Vincentio's Servant............................Nolan Carey

--------There will be a 10 minute Intermission -----------

The Performance of Ms. Griffin is in partial fulfillment of the
degree of a Master of Fine Arts in Performance
** Understudy for the role of Tranio

~Director's Note.

June 2004 will mark the seventh theatre pilgrimage that I
have made to Greece--the mystical birthplace of thea-
tre in the western world. The Athens Centre has invited
our production of The Taming of the Shrew to be show-
cased as part of their pre-Olympic Summer Theatre Fes-
tival. We will be performing on the Marble Theatre in
Athens on June I6th and on the Anagyrios Amphitheatre
on the Greek island of Spetses on June 19th. Our Greek
audiences will include visitors from many different coun-
tries and diverse cultures.

What does Shakespeare's early comedy, a tale of a ma-
cho man taming an independent woman into an accept-
able wife, have to say to a twenty-first century audience?
Unlike Shakespeare's Elizabethan England, it is no longer
acceptable for one sex to mistreat the other into sub-
mission. Perhaps it is high time to look deeper into the
relationship of Kate and Petruchio. What do they have
in common? How do they differ and perhaps comple-
ment one another? Are there significant differences in
the public versus the private moments of their wooing?
As the players leave the stage, do we really know "who
tamed whom?"

Judith W. B.Williams

J.J. Beggs, Meg Loftus

Josh Morris

Erin Boyington

Randi Fink

Kina Jahnke

Maria Perez

Allison Pipkin ,Genevieve Beller

Kim Healy, Donna Schmidt. Katie

Karina Ayala

Gabe Price, Kristen Sweeney,
Lauren Frazer, Genie Kim,
Vawnya Nichols

Jonathan Scholten

Julie E. Ballard

Mihai Ciupe

Josh Morris, Jonathan Scholten,
Andy Farrugia

Assistant Stage

Poster Designer:

Program Designer:

Assistant Light Designer:

Light Board Operator:

Sound Board Operator:

Follow Spot Operators:

Running Crew:

Wardrobe Head:


Prop Master:

Stage Manager Advisor:

Scene Design Advisor:

Scenic Graduate

Lighting Design Advisor:

Stan Kaye

Graduate Lighting

Eric Ketchum, Amber C.
Moreland Howell, Price Johnston,
Julie E. Ballard

Mark Howieson

T.J. King

Mark A. DeLorenzo

Todd Bedell

T.J. King

Paul Favini

Carol Gabridge-Cook

Bresean Jenkins, Jennie Rose
Fuldauer, Meghan Anderson-
Doyle, Elizabeth Rasmusson

TPA 2202, THE 4950

TPA 3214, THE4950,

Technical Director:

Assistant Technical

Master Electrician:

Scene Shop Foreman:

Master Carpenter:

Costume Design Advisor:

Costume Shop Foreman:

Costume Graduate

Set Construction:


Dance Concert/ Florida Mod
Dir~ecrted By: Kelly Caw~thon
Black- Boxr Tleatre
Januaroy 2/-30

A Midsurmmer Night's Dream
By,: W~illiamrr Shakeis~earre
Dir-ecrted By: Dr. Judnith Willantls
Constans Theaotr-e
Marr-ch 25- April 3

You Never Can Tell
By~: George Bernardcrt Shawr
Direcctedl By: Dr. Davr~id You~ng
Conlstanls Theatre
Februaryn 18-24

The Ohio State Mlurders
By': Adr~ienne Kennredy'
Direcctedi By: Dr-. Mikell Pinlkney~
Black Box\ Teaotr-e
April 14-17

'Mnivetcityk of tearida.
Schae of Steatr~e CUd f2)ace
2004/2005 Secawn

Salle 2004

WVhat the Bulter Saw
By~: Joe Or~ton
Dir~erctd By~: Dr. Dav~id She/ron
Conlstan~s Thleatr-e
Sep'temrber 28-Octobe 3

Anything Goes
By: Cole Por~ter
Direccted By: Tony\ Mara
Conlstairs Theatre
October- 28- Novemberc~ 7

T'he Bacehae
By~: Eu~r-ipdes
Dircc~ctd By': Dr. Ral~f
BlacIk Boxr Tleatre
Oc~toberr 13-17

Ag~hedidi Africa
Dir-ec~td By~: Mnohamedt
Conlstans Theatre
Nov'~rembe 18-21

Spring4 2005

Department of Theatre and Dance

Kcevin Mlarshall, Chair
Joan Frosch, Assistant Chair
Dr. Ruisti Blrandmani, Dance
Yanci Bulkovec, Perflormance
K~elly Cawvthon, Dance
iAlihai Cinipe, Scene Design
Mlohamed DaCosta, Dance
Paul Favini, Costumne Design
Mleredith Farnum, Dance
Mlark How~ieson, Technical Director
Pamela K~aye, Design
Stan K~aye, Lighting Design
Dr. Barb~ara K~orner, Perf~ormance
Tony Mlata, Musical Theatre
Dr. Mlikell Pinkney, Performance/ Theory
Dr. Ralf Remshardt, History/ Dramaturgy
Isa Garcia Rose, Dance
Ric Rose, Dalnce
Kathy Surra. Performance
Ntozake Shlange, Perf~ormance
Dr. D~avid Seltonl, Perf'ormnance Coordinator
Jill Sonke, Dance
Paul Stern, Unde~lrgraduate Advisor
Regina Truhart, Costume Technology
Dr. Judith WYilliams, Performance
Dr. David Young, Graduate Rese~arch Pr-ofessor

Todd Bedell, Teaching Lab Manager
Mlark A. DetLorenzo, Master Electrician
Carol Gab~ridge-Cook, Costumne Shop Foreman
Frances Jonles, Offlice Manager
Rosalie Preston, Senior Secretary
Janelle Smiith, Accountant

The University of Florida
President of The University of Florida
Dr. J. Bernard Mlachen
Dean. College of Fine Arts
Dr. Donald E. Mlc~lothlin
Associate De~an
Dr. Mlichael B~lachly
Associate Dean
Mlarcia Isaacson
Associate Dean
Dr. Blarbara K~orner

Have lovefor teater? Wat~ to beprto aeae

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Katrina Renee Griffin was born in Sacramento, California, to Yardley and Kitty

Griffmn. She began acting at a young age, performing monologues written by her

mother at various charitable and business events. In 1997, Katrina completed her

Bachelor of Arts degree in theater at Spelman College in Atlanta, Georgia, and

she graduated with departmental honors. Upon graduation from the University of

Florida she plans to pursue an acting career in New York.

I certify that I have read this document and that in my opinion it conforms to
acceptable standards of scholarly presentation and is fully adequate, in scope and
quality, as a performance in lieu of thesis for the degree of Master of Fine Arts.

David Shelton, Chair
Professor of Theater

I certify that I have read this document and that in my opinion it conforms to
acceptable standards of scholarly presentation and is fully adequate, in scope and
quality, as a performance in lieu of thesis for the degree of Master of Fine Arts.

Yanci Bukovec
Associate Professor of Theater

This performance in lieu of thesis was submitted to the Graduate Faculty of the
College of Fine Arts and was accepted as partial fulfillment of the requirements
for the degree of Master of Fine Arts.

August 2004
Kevin Marshall
Director, School of Theater & Dance

Donald E. McGlothlin
Dean, College of Fine Arts

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