Review by: Paul Towers, 16 August 2017
A Midsumer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare
A Curve Young Company and Community Production
Curve 10 – 20th August 2017
“a magical dream”
First up I have to admit that Shakespeare normally leaves me cold. I just cannot tune into the dialogue patterns. It is like a foreign language to me.
That said, although I did not have high hopes for this production I was very pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed it. While the huge chunks of Shakesperean verbiage bored me to death, this play has the huge advantage of being liberally laced with plenty of humour and, under Nick Winston’s direction, huge chunks of physical comedy.
Most of the hilarity is provided by Alexander Clifford’s Bottom (his character, not his anatomy!) who seemed to be channelling Marlon from Emmerdale to great effect.
While the entire cast is excellent special mention has to go to Harvey Thorpe and Chris Brookes as Demitirus and Lysander, the thwarted lovers of Helena and Hermia who swashbuckle their way through a very realistic fight sequence.
In a break with tradition Puck is played by two actors simultaneously, Joel Fossard-Jones and Mahesh Parmar, as a sort of devilish Jedward, sometimes sharing lines and sometimes alternating but at all times creating mischief. Very effective.
The set is very imaginative, a grassy knoll which doubles up as a stage; a very effective cyclorama across the back of the stage that is used to imply the forest, the various interiors and also a screen for dream sequences.
To make the play more relevant to a young audience there are modern ‘street’ dances inserted and a couple of songs which, although not strictly authentic, worked well.
All in all this is a magical dream that will, hopefully, entice more youngsters into the theatre.
Tickets are still available at www.curveonline.co.uk
First published on Western Gazette