February 5th, 2004


Midsummer Night's Dream

A Midsummer Night's Dream, at the ART, was the other night. 3 for 3 with lying-on-the-stage, but really, that particular play is a gimme, as there are people sleeping left and right. Still, this might have hit the record for me, with more than 50% of the time involving people lying on the stage.

I really liked the Mechanicals. But then, I always do. That's my favorite Shakespeare ever. The love plots are always a little annoying - this play is a little more like Gilbert and Sullivan, in that it doesn't really matter who is in love with who, as long as everyone's sorted out in pairs at the end. The fairies were flying on wires, which was lovely. I do, I do, I do believe in fairies (speaking of which, I also really liked the recent Peter Pan movie...).

But the stage setting! It was... like a graveyard on the moon! A grey featureless stage, with three pits, essentially open graves. Puck was a goth wild-haired hunched Igor, who "put a girdle round the earth" not by flying, but by climbing down into one grave and coming out another. It was just very bleak. And it's hard to maintain the proper level of "oh, it's all just a happy lark" with that sort of setting, so (aside from the flying fairies) it was a somewhat creepy diatribe about the abuse of magical power and mind control, and the pathetic nature of love.
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