Carl Bradley of Nameless Theatre tells us about this summer’s production of Shakespeare’s most popular comedy
As Harry Potter discovered, magic can be dangerous. Wandering into an enchanted wood and crossing paths with the wrong fairy can turn your whole world upside down, leading you to love those you hate, hate those you love, or possibly have your head replaced with that of a donkey. Shakespeare’s illegal drug addiction has long been the subject of speculation, but one look at the madness that unfurls in A Midsummer Night’s Dream all but confirms it.
How else could he have come up with a plot containing ideas as seemingly disconnected as two couples on the run, a war between fairies over an Indian boy and a group of bumbling community theatre actors trying to stage a version of Pyramus and Thisbe? Yet somehow, the Bard makes it work. Midsummer is Shakespeare’s funniest and most popular comedy, performed hundreds of times a year all over the world. This summer, it comes to Nagoya.
In an attempt to bring some order to the chaos, Nameless Theatre has brought together a group of 50 actors and artists from Aichi’s international community. We needed as much help as we could get, as this show is the biggest we’ve attempted. Staged around big musical numbers written and performed by Prisca Molotsi (also appearing as Fairy Queen Titania) and choreographed by Miho Kobayashi, imagine West Side Story meeting the gothic vibe of Harry Potter.
Inspiration from the Harry Potter films can be seen everywhere throughout this production, from the mysterious set design to the costumes (designed by Sophie Goto) and props (can’t have magic without wands!). But we’ve kept things fundamentally true to the Bard’s vision. So while the musical numbers are brassy and bold, the lyrics are taken from Shakespeare’s original, beautiful verse.
Alongside our army of dancing fairies, we’re proud to have with us on stage some of the best international acting talent in Aichi. Fairy King Oberon will be played by Kazumasa Nishikawa, headmaster of the prestigious national dance school Nishikawa-Ryu. Alongside familiar faces in the community theatre scene such as Jessica A. Robison (Hermia), Matthew Lott (Demetrius), Aya Kawakami (Puck), Danielle Lott (Helena), Elijah Ben (Theseus) and Cameron Smith (Francis Flute) are newcomers Jonathon Freeman (Lysander), Susie Misuzu (Hippolyta) and Veenesh Dubois (Bottom). You’ll also recognize community leaders such as Harry Hill (Tom Snout), Lowell Sheppard (Egeus), Matt Fraser (Philostrate) and Stephen Kovacsics (Robin Starveling).
This is a 400-year-old Shakespeare play, but our local international community is making it their own. Together, we’re creating something truly unique that could only have been made right here in Nagoya. We’re excited to share this with you, and hope you will join us at the theatre to see it come to life. Because while the boy who lived knew magic can be dangerous, as he also found out, it can be a hell of a lot of fun.
A Midsummer Night’s Dream will be performed in English with Japanese subtitles at the Nagoya City Performing Arts Center (名古屋市芸術創造センター) in Shinsakae.
Fri. June 3rd (18:30)
Sat. June 4th (13:00 & 18:30)
Sun. June 5th (13:00 & 17:00)
Advance ¥4,000 / Door ¥5,000
For group discount tickets please contact email@example.com
To book tickets online please visit:
Tickets are also available by contacting cast and crew members.
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