Don’t miss terrific spin on Shakespearean classic
Theatre in the Forest, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Red Rose Chain, Rendlesham Forest, until August 29: This is how this play should be performed – in terms of setting and spirit.
theatre in the Forest, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Red Rose Chain, Rendlesham Forest, until August 29: This is how this play should be performed – in terms of setting and spirit.
There’s a lot going on so pay attention, here comes the plot bit. Hermia is betrothed to Demetrius but is in love with Lysander so the two run away.
Hermia’s best friend, Helena, is in love with Demetrius so tells him Hermia and Lysander have done a runner. All four go chasing through the forest only to get caught up in row between Oberon and Titania, king and queen of the fairies.
Throw in the mischievous fairy Puck and a gaggle of wannabe actors who pick the worst place to rehearse and you’ve got a play packed full of unrequited and magically misdirected love, music and mayhem.
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One of my favourite Shakespearean stories, it was an energetic and fun performance played out perfectly by a hardworking cast juggling multiple roles and the natural setting was used to great affect.
Cliched as it sounds, it really is hard to single out lone performers. All handled the tricky balance of drama and comedy extremely well. If pushed I would say Victoria Gee as Helena Cobweb the fairy and Peter Quince, the acting troupe’s put-upon leader, ever so slightly edged it for me; her performance as Quince was hysterical while her anguish as Helena at Demetrius’ rejection was moving.
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It may have started to rain, but it didn’t dampen any spirits – be it those of the audience or those running around the forest. I’d happily go back again and urge lovers of the Bard not to miss this fun spin on a Shakespearean classic.