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Megan Stodel reviews a new interpretation of a Shakespearean classic

Hayley Gallivan as Hermia and Tom Padley as Lysander in A Midsummer Night's Dream at Regent's Park Open Air Theatre. Photo Johan Persson - resized.jpg

The Open Air Theatre in Regent’s Park is currently showing Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream. As you might imagine with a play that is so frequently produced, they’ve been eager to bring a new interpretation to it, which they have done by setting it in the Traveller community. Or, as they put it on their website, their production is a “big fat gypsy telling of Shakespeare’s comedic tale”.

The production is certainly new and different, but what does the choice of direction do for the play? In a review for The F-Word, I argue that, instead of creating a sense of common ground, the interpretation is distancing, and the portrayal of a complex community is simplistic and demeaning.

Click here to read the review and comment.

Photo by Johan Persson and reproduced with permission