Preview of A Midsummer Night’s Dream is online

My preview of Globe Theatre‘s production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream is online now at the LeaderPost. An excerpt:

For audiences, it’s not physical vocabulary but Shakespeare’s 400-year-old verbal vocabulary that may intimidate. But Geoffrey Whynot, who plays Theseus and Oberon, points out that “in real life we don’t necessarily hear every word someone speaks. I think if the actors are clear on what they’re saying, what the relationships and the journeys are, even if the audience hears a word that’s archaic, they will understand it contextually, and they will still hear the emotional life of the line.”

There’s a lot of “emotional life” in A Midsummer Night’s Dream. “The point of it is love,” Whynot says: characters develop an understanding of love and rediscover its power.

“And it is funny,” he adds.

“It’s so funny,” (artistic director Ruth) Smillie agrees.

And she also agrees it’s about love: “Romeo and Juliet without the swords and death,” she calls it.

“It takes the same premise, star-crossed lovers, and through fairy magic and fairy mishap it all comes right in the end. Through the night the metaphor is that these young lovers are actually able to see each other as individual people, whereas before it was all about lust and honour and all the rest of it.”

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