Struts & Frets: Interviews with the Cast & Crew of Merchant of Venice - Mary McNulty

Don't let Mary's name fool you. She's in no way quite contrary, she doesn't have any kind of lamb, nor is she part of the interjection used to wish people happy holidays. But what she IS is our Portia! And what a Portia she is. This is a very coveted role within the Shakespearean canon, and Mary makes it all her own. Check out her words below, then her actions in Merchant of Venice.

And her headshot too, if you're into that kind of thing.
Which, let's face it,  you are. (Pun intended)

HID: First thing’s first: What’s your favorite color, and the favorite color of your character? And why?

MM:  I actually do not have a favorite color. I tend to go through color "phases". I'm currently on a grey tweed kick. Although tweed isn't a color.... Portia's favorite color is a lovely rust red. It feels regal, yet down to earth.

HID: In what ways is Portia different than you’d imagined her before playing the part? In what ways is she exactly what you’d expected?

MM: I was surprised to discover how nerdy and relatable Portia is. She's smart, attractive, and witty but doesn't flaunt these attributes. Portia has an inherent sense of status and duty because of her upbringing, but she is not a conventional woman of society. She knows how a lady should behave, but often gets flustered and goes on nervous tangents. She speaks her mind, letting her true self shine through which is what makes her strong, grounded, and ultimately successful. Going into this role, I knew Portia was sympathetic, very gutsy and brave. I mean, she disguises herself as a guy, runs away with her maid and saves the men! I would totally be friends with this Shakespearean Superwoman!

HID: When someone finally chooses the right box, what will Portia’s wedding theme and colors be?

MM: There will be no theme other than "wedding" as Portia has had enough rules and stipulations surrounding her marriage (i.e. the choosing of boxes)! The color scheme would be grey, lavender, and a deep blue, I think.

HID: If someone had to choose the right box to marry you, Mary, what would the three boxes be and which would your portrait be in?

MM: Oh man. I'm so glad that choosing the box containing my picture is not how my marriage will be decided. But if it was, this is how it would be: The first box would be rustic and natural, carved from a tree. The second would be an Annie's cheddar bunnies box, and the third would be a blue Tiffany's box. I'd be in the wooden one. Unless I get hungry, in which case I'd eat all the cheddar bunnies and put my picture there. 

You heard it here, folks! it, anyway. We're sure you enjoyed it either way. And you know what you'll enjoy even more? Seeing Mary McNulty (and all the HIDiots) live in Hamlet Isn't Dead's Merchant of Venice! We open December 14th. See you there!
Tickets are available at -- ON SALE NOW! Shows run Dec. 14th - 17th.

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