I received my B.F.A. and M.A. in Theatre at the University of Colorado at Boulder, where for several seasons I appeared in various roles in the Colorado Shakespeare Festival. I also sold t-shirts, served as dramaturg (literary assistant to a director) and worked in the box office. One of my favorite things about Shakespeare has been learning stage combat. I've had chances to perform stage fights with rapier and dagger, broadsword, epee, Roman short sword and quarterstaff. Therefore my favorite memory of performing in a Shakespeare play has to be the final duel in Hamlet, a fight with rapier and dagger—my first sword fight. One night the actor playing Laertes nicked my hand with his sword, giving me a small cut, so as I lay dying Horatio struggled to apply a band-aid that someone had slipped to him. My favorite Shakespeare play, however, is King Lear. I've been in two productions of it, and it never gets old. The rawness of the emotions—the depth of hatred and the extremity of grief, expressed through such stark and beautiful language—makes this a uniquely terrifying play.
I went on to get my Ph.D. in Drama at Stanford, where I now teach in the Oral Communication Program. But I still get to do some acting once in a while.