In the course of the English Civil War (1642-1651), local theatres were closed and the side plot of A Midsummer Night’s Dream was shown independently.
In this spirit, and out of true belief of being constantly engaged in an exhausting civil war, Clipa’s Ariel Bronz now conducts a staged experiment to lift actors and audience to a breaking point, where they are challenged to rebel against what is
presented in front of them.
The play takes off with the false pretense that the actors have each memorized all the individual parts of the play, and will only be assigned their final role live on stage, seconds before they start. They will struggle with their lines, experience extreme interpersonal tensions and face wild interruptions by their director, an extreme character, similar to the King and Queen in Shakespeare’s
The actors continue in spite of a constant mocking, manipulation and increasing abuse, making artistic choices based on pure survival. As the boundaries dissolve between reality, the original play and the adaptation, it becomes impossible to determine when the actors’ distress is real and when it is deliberate.
The audience will experience first-hand the impact of being the passive oppressor, finding escapistic refuge in entertainment like theatre, in identity politics and in art designated to nurse hurt pride. Even though the audience’s empathy is given to the actors, it enjoys watching them carry their burden.
This new adaptation of A Midsummer Night’s Dream has a wicked combination of childish jokes and subtle innuendos, refined sets and cheap costumes, Mendelssohn and rave music, the urge to be funny as a result of suffering, a tragic comedy and a comic tragedy.