Paulina played by Niamh Cusack
The Winter's Tale (2016)
Written by: William Shakespeare
In her first show for Shakespeare's Globe, Niamh Cusack plays Paulina in The Winter's Tale.
Theatre includes: Ticking (Trafalgar Studios); The Rehearsal (Chichester Minerva); Juno and the Paycock (Liverpool Playhouse/Bristol Old Vic); Afterplay (Sheffield Studio); The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night time (National Theatre/West End); The Enchantment, His Dark Materials (National Theatre); Dancing at Lughnasa, The Playboy of the Western World, Cause Celebre (Old Vic); Mammals, Phoenix (Bush); Ghosts (Gate); Three Sisters, A Doll's House (Gate Theatre Dublin); As You like It, Othello, Romeo and Juliet (RSC); Merchant of Venice (Chichester Festival Theatre) and The Admiral Crichton (West End).
Film includes: Departure, Testament of Youth, Chick Lit, In Love with Alma Cogan, Hereafter, The Closer You Get, The Playboys, Paris by Night and Fools of Fortune.
Television includes: Rebellion, Silent Witness, New Tricks, Best of Men, The Hollow Crown, Midsomer Murders, Fallen Angel, The Last Detective, Miss Marple, Too Good to Be True, Loving You, Always and Everyone, Rhinoceros, Heartbeat and Poirot.
Radio includes: Ulysses, Brooklyn, Academy Street and numerous plays by Rachel Joyce.
"There’s a real sense of an audience participating and being eager, eager to hear the play. So I think in terms of a palpable, visceral experience of theatre, I think it’s one of the best theatres I’ve ever worked at."
With performances under way, Niamh talks about acting in the Sam Wanamaker experience for the first time, the magic of the theatre, and bringing the play before a live audience.
"You have to work quite hard to listen in Shakespeare. So the more you practise listening, the more you listen to other people doing Shakespeare, the more it becomes like your own language and a language that you own."
Looking back on the rehearsal process, Niamh reflects on working with the cast, scenes which have proven key to her, and the importance of listening
"If you're looking at your first Shakespeare, just watch how often they take one and another's words and reuse them and turn them and twist them...Paulina matches Leontes beat for beat for beat and wins."
In her second interview, Niamh discusses Paulina's powerful words, her initial impressions of the character, and how these have changed throughout rehearsal.
"It's universal and it's contemporary and he articulates for me things that I haven't been able to articulate. That was the big thing."
In her first interview for The Winter's Tale, Niamh talks about why Shakespeare is important to her, her earliest experiences with Shakespeare, and her time at the RSC.