Sunday, April 17, 2005

a midsummer night's dream

Last night we went to see "A Mid Summer Night’s Dream" put on by a local high school. I’ve never read this play, the plot sounded confusing when I read a summary of it on-line, but my niece (Jacquie) was the stage manager, and aside from the fact there isn’t too much live theater I don’t enjoy, going to support her was reason enough to be there.

Well, what a treat!

For starters, the set was amazing. The Wheelhouse Theater at Earl Marriott School had been turned into a forest.

Then the play began, and the plot turned out to be not hard to follow at all. But now that I’ve seen the play, I realize, it’s not really about the plot line , but about characters, ideas (of love and how irrational it can be), and a night of ribald fun.

The whole thing is played out in the forest, so there was no need for curtains and scene changes. (day, night and mood nuances were signified with music and lighting -- the latter which, the program told us, our Jacquie helped design). The cast used the whole theater, with lovers chasing each other around on the stairways and characters frequently making entrances from the back of the house.

The cast here was sensational. Standouts were Puck who was played by an impish fuzzy-haired girl named Marina, and Nick Bottom whose name in real life is Russell – and who, my sister told me, is student body co-president with Jacquie, and is in real life as much of a cut-up as he was on stage.

The costuming was also fabulous – a visual feast with the human characters dressed in period clothes, and the fairies wearing tights, over which strips of multi-colored gauzy fabric trailed like boa stoles.

I hope I get to see this fun play again – although after this high school performance, I wonder how any other could surpass it in color, energy, excellence and fun.

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