A Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare

A Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare
B Sharp. Downstairs, Belvoir Street Theatre. Until December 20

The final production, in another successful year for the B Sharp program, is Company B’s Artistic Associate Eamon Flack’s production of the most playful of the Bard’s comedies, A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

This was a high spirited production with a cast of nine giving their all to a very receptive audience, including some school-kids who enjoyed their slice of live Shakespeare. At one time there was even an attempt by a few people to start a Mexican wave.

In the carnival like atmosphere there were some fine moments. My pick… Katherine Cullen as a longing Queen Titania giving a sensual rendition of Whitney Housten’s ‘I want to dance with somebody’….Tim Walter tinkling away at the casio keyboard and singing Leonard Cohen’s classic ballad, ‘Dance Me Till The End Of Love’…Puck, in frustration, dunking of a couple of the Athenians into a large red bucket filled with the magic love potion…At the close, Katherine Cullen, together with Tim Walter, looking rightly regal as the King and Queen enjoying the comic mayhem of the Mechanicals performance of Peter Quince’s ‘Pyramus and Thisbe’.

Charlie Garber played the plum role of Puck, the play’s prime mischief maker. Flack in his program notes, puts it succinctly when he says of Puck, “Puck creates the chaos, rescues everyone from it, and then demands applause’.

Applause, lots of it, Garber gets, as does the rest of the company, for a memorable night’s entertainment. Applause too goes to Alistair Watts for a set that works well in the intimate downstairs space. The front stage area is a grassed area where the action takes place, at the back is a curtain of strips of silver tinsel. The cast managed quick costume changes in the tiny space behind the curtain. Late in the play one of the cast opened the curtain to reveal a reflective ‘wall’, which with the bright lighting, leant a shimmering effect to the tinsel.

A Midsummer Night’s Dream plays the downstairs theatre at Belvoir Street until Saturday December 20.

David Kary

Photograph by Heidrun Lohr

 

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