KCPT Presents Shakespeare in the Park – “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”
Love, Mischief, and Acrobatics descend on Chetzemoka Park, August 7-30, 2015.
Take two sets of misguided lovers, throw in a handful of mischievous fairies, top it all off with a healthy dose of vaudevillian acrobatics and what do you get? A play with something for everyone!
One of Shakespeare’s most beloved and oft performed plays, A Midsummer Night’s Dream tells the story of the unseen, imagined forces that can wreak havoc, hilarity, and confusion upon everyday life. Director Duncan Frost notes, “Midsummer is a play of love and magic that challenges us to examine the wavering line between imagination and reality, especially when it comes to matters of the heart.”
Set adrift between these realities, a group of young Athenian lovers embark on an increasingly absurd journey of misdirected love potions, prankster fairy Kings, and plays within plays so ridiculous they mock the very institution of theater.
A classic in motion
Speaking on why A Midsummer Night’s Dream has become one of Shakespeare’s most enduring plays, Frost praises its ability to juxtapose reality and the dream state. He says, “Theatre asks us to suspend our disbelief and dive into the dream-like world of the play for a time before being released from its spell. Few plays embrace that idea in the way that Midsummer does.”
Frost also emphasizes the importance of the park setting to this production, saying, “so many of the characters in this play get lost, transformed, and confused. It is much easier to create confusion on stage when you have the versality of an open space.”
Helping to add to that surreal environment is Tomoki Sage, who, in addition to playing the role of the impish elf Puck, is serving as the production’s Movement Coach. One of the founding members of “Acrobaticalist Ninja Theatre” troupe Nanda, Sage is helping to set this production of Midsummer apart from others by employing aspects of circus, tumbling, silent film, and physical storytelling to help create the magic of the play. Expressing his excitement about the physical freedom imparted by the park setting, he says, “by offering so many different levels and depths to play from, the outdoor stage creates more exciting ways to enter and exit scenes than I’ve ever experienced in a show before.”
And, of course, in addition to providing the ideal location for this forest-bound misadventure, Chetzemoka Park is the perfect place to spend a summer evening in Port Townsend! So, whether theatre-goers come for the magic, the mischief, or the beautiful waterside setting, KCPT’s production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream is sure to please!
Performances run August 7-30, 2015 outdoors at Chetzemoka Park (Jackson & Blaine Streets) in Port Townsend, Fridays through Sundays at 6 p.m. (Open seating begins at 5:30 p.m.). Running time is about two hours, including one intermission.
Audience members are encouraged to bring blankets or lawn chairs for seating on the grass and to dress warmly for when the sun goes down. Picnic fare is welcome. Concessions will also be sold. For those with limited mobility, golf cart transport will be provided from the park entrance at Jackson and Blaine Streets down the hill to the performance venue.
Admission is by suggested donation. Advance tickets/info are available from the playhouse box office at 360-385-KCPT (5278), or online at http://www.keycitypublictheatre.org/.
Oberon (David Natale) and Puck (Tomoki Sage) use their magical powers to manipulate the thoughts and desires of a group of young lovers in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, playing August 7th– 30th at KCPT’s Shakespeare in the Park in Port Townsend’s Chetzemoka Park. Photo by Phil Baumgaertner.