Take the small opportunities as well because you never know what project you encounter now may branch out to be a much larger, beneficial, and profitable project later. —Armin Shimerman
Armin (@ShimermanArmin) is perhaps best known to audiences for playing Quark on the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine series.
I consider myself quite fortunate to count Armin as a teacher, peer, and friend. He’s been instrumental in my Shakespeare studies and we’ve also worked together in theatre, in full productions and staged readings. He’s a truly giving and humble person, and a great addition to this podcast!
Armin has been working 50 years in the business and has amassed 200+ credits on IMDb, with 4 projects in post-production. He was a long-running recurring character on Beauty and the Beast, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and Boston Legal.
He has voiced Dr. Nefarious in the video game Ratchet and Clank, and has done many other voiceovers, video games, and commercials.
He’s also a Shakespeare scholar, teacher, director, and actor. In recent years, he has played Leo Tolstoy and King Lear’s Fool onstage. He’s also a writer, and has written a few novels with a sci-fi/Renaissance twist in the Merchant Prince series.
We talk about him acting in high school, studying and working at the Old Globe in San Diego, finding a mentor on Broadway, many of his ups and downs, what he believes has kept him working, and even dive into some Richard of Gloucester.
Please enjoy my chat with Armin Shimerman!
Total running time: 1:43:20
- Stream by clicking here.
- Download as an MP3 by right-clicking here and choosing “save as/save link as”.
Want to hear more from another Shakespeare teacher and actor? Check out my talk with Dakin Matthews, an actor, teacher, dramaturg, and scholar, currently appearing on Broadway!
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Armin Shimerman around the web
- How he came up with the voice for Dr. Nefarious
- The heroic act his mother did for him
- His personal philosophy toward acting
- His fear of auditioning after all his theatre success
- The one role he actively pursued and how he did it
- “Getting lost” in a character in high school
- How theatre helped with his feelings of insecurity
- What drew him to Shakespeare, and has remained part of his life’s work
- How he got his “big break” with acting roles at the Old Globe, and then really screwed it up
- The masterclass he watched every night while in Saint Joan on Broadway
- The special nickname Philip Bosco had for Armin
- How fate played a hand in Armin’s first commercial agent
- The pact he made with himself when he turned 40
- How teaching came into his life
- His main approach when teaching Shakespeare
- What he wished he had done as a younger actor
- What he shares with students about being a working actor
- What he believes actors should ignore
Selected People and Items Mentioned
- Kitty Swink, actress and Armin’s wife
- Ratchet and Clank video game
- Quark on Deep Space Nine
- The Crucible by Arthur Miller
- Old Globe Theatre
- Jack O’Brien, director
- Ativan, medication
- Joe Papp and the Public Theatre
- The Threepenny Opera by Bertolt Brecht
- Raul Julia, actor
- Saint John by George Bernard Shaw
- Philip Bosco, actor
- Beauty and the Beast television show
- Ellen Geer and Theatricum Botanicum
- Antaeus Theatre
- Armin’s USC Shakespeare course
- Euphues by John Lyly
Armin’s Monologue from Henry VI, Part III (Act 3, Scene 2) by Shakespeare
RICHARD OF GLOUCESTER
click to view/close the monologue
Armin teaching Shakespeare back in 1993!
This may be the audition where Armin tripped!
Copy and share: bit.ly/waj-armin
Photo credit: Michael Lamont / Geffen Theatre (The Gospel According to Thomas Jefferson, Charles Dickens and Count Leo Tolstoy: Discord by Scott Carter)