Reunited And It Feels So Good

 

Jessica Schiermeister, MFA in Shakespeare and Performance from Mary Baldwin College; lives in Charlottesville.
Jessica Schiermeister, MFA in Shakespeare and Performance from Mary Baldwin College; lives in Charlottesville.

In my nine years of experience with Shakespeare’s plays, one man (besides the man himself) had a hand in my development. I met Jeremy Fiebig in the fall of 2007 when I was a college freshman, majoring in theatre, and he was a recent graduate of a master’s program. His first out-of-school job was as technical director at a little college in northern Iowa called Waldorf. Luckily for me, I decided to attend Waldorf just the previous spring. Our paths crossed and my life would surely never be the same.

Jeremy directed me in five Shakespeare productions, one musical, and two 19th century plays. He taught at least six of my undergraduate classes, he talked me into getting more involved with Waldorf’s costume and props departments, and he led a group of students, of which I was a part, on a whirlwind two-week trip to London. Somewhere down the

Jessica Schiermeister as Cecily and Jeremy Fiebig as Algernon in The Importance of Being Earnest, 2009, directed by Jeremy Fiebig.
Jessica Schiermeister as Cecily and Jeremy Fiebig as Algernon in The Importance of Being Earnest, 2009, directed by Jeremy Fiebig.

line he also talked me into adding the new Shakespeare Minor in addition to my theatre major, which led to an internship at the American Shakespeare Center and my acceptance into Mary Baldwin College’s Shakespeare and Performance Master of Letters/Master of Fine Arts program. Unfortunately Jeremy left Waldorf to pursue another opportunity elsewhere during my junior year. Some of us were devastated. This man has believed in me for nine straight years. Thanks in large part to him, I now have three degrees, one of which is terminal, and a massive love for early modern drama that I certainly did not have in high school.

Entering graduate school in 2011, I wanted to act. I starred in every Shakespeare production Waldorf produced during my time there, and even directed one of my own, and I was ready. I was ready to enhance my skills and become an actor professionally. This did not pan out the way I originally hoped. Instead, I fell in love with scholarship and dramaturgy (something else to which Jeremy introduced me during undergrad). During my second year Master of Letters thesis, I discovered a topic in which I’ve since remained steadfastly interested. Acting has taken a back seat since then (except my time as the titular role in a five-woman production of Richard II during my MFA year, directed by Charlene V. Smith, and various other small projects).

Jessica Schiermeister as the Woman in Green and Steven Pals as Peer Gynt in Peer Gynt, 2010, directed by Jeremy Fiebig.
Jessica Schiermeister as the Woman in Green and Steven Pals as Peer Gynt in Peer Gynt, 2010, directed by Jeremy Fiebig.

 

I have never acted professionally. This summer with Hoosier Shakes is going to be different for me in a lot of ways. But I know that due to Jeremy’s guidance and my own experience, I’m going to have a great time. I’m thrilled to be able to work with him again and to spend time getting to know the other members of this company. Without Jeremy, I probably would not have discovered my love for Shakespeare and my life would be far more boring indeed.

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Twelfth Night and Pericles will be performed in repertory at Charley Creek Gardens in Wabash, IN, June 8-12 and the 3rd Street Courtyard in Marion, IN, June 15-19 and 22-26. Pre show entertainment will commence at 7:00 PM. shows will begin at 7:30 PM. Approximately run-time for each show is 2 hours and 15 minutes. Bring lawn chairs or blankets for seating.

Performances are offered on a Pay-What-You-Will basis. If you like what you see, make a donation to Hoosier Shakes, Inc. during intermission or after the show. Donations may be made online through the Hoosier Shakes account on Paypal: Login to Paypal.com and send money to “info@hoosiershakes.com”.

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