College’s interpretation involved ballet, interpretive dance, comedy and drama, leaving the viewer with a sense of euphoria
By Donna Russell
In its spirited rendition of the Shakespeare play, which ran Oct. 24-27, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, North Lake College’s Theatre Company, under the direction of Valerie Hauss-Smith, took its audience to a magical forest where three stories of love were enmeshed to create a mystical evening of laughter and fun.
Shakespeare’s 16th century version of the play hilariously collides with a 21st century NLC drama student’s interpretation to create an explosive experience that few in the audience will soon forget.
The play began with a lot of grunting bravado from Egeus, (Michael Burns) one of Theseus’ (Javier Morante) noblemen. He enters the court of Theseus demanding that his daughter marry Demetrius (Cameron Ma’honey), a man she does not love. From there, mayhem ensues.
Though Ma’honey’s character is irritating in the beginning, he develops into a loveable nobleman by the end. Lysander, played by Adrian Stecker, is in perfect form throughout the play. Hermia is portrayed with finesse and flair by Lauren Riley. She blends a naive innocence with a certain stubbornness perfect for her character.
Kamen Casey gave an engaging and mesmerizing interpretation of Puck, Oberon’s chief fairy attendant. He brought an energy and physical presence to the character and transformed, literally, into Puck right before your eyes. He is a talented actor, dancer and comedian.
The passion and comedic flare of the fairies and clowns left you almost exhausted by the end of the play. The multiple talents necessary to portray the characters helped make this play mystical and unique.
The play is a combination of ballet, interpretive dance, comedy and drama, and all of the components merged flawlessly. The lighting and set design aided quick transitions between scenes and helped transform the room into a new world. The audience laughed its way from scene to scene, and jumped and booed exactly on cue.
There was fairy magic in this play. The dynamics of the production, the set, the lighting and the excellent character portrayals left the viewer with a sense of euphoria. The play tackled some of the complicated intricacies of life, love and uncontrollable events, and did so in a seamless way. It was a magical evening.