A Midsummer Night's Dream in Gotham

A Midsummer Night’s Dream in Gotham is exactly what it says on the tin. It’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream but with Batman. Why? That’s not readily apparent but who cares? It has Batman.

A Midsummer Night’s Dream. With Batman. Indeed, for some, that might be enough.

The plot is that of A Midsummer Night’s Dream but with Batman. Lysander, Hermia, Demetrius and Helena all play out the traditional story and instead of being surrounded by fairies, they are surrounded by Batman (formerly Oberon) and Robin (Puck). Catwoman (formerly Titania) leads a contingent consisting of Hawkgirl, Bluebird and Enchantress. Why? BATMAN.

There’s no real reason for this production to exist, besides Batman, but it is very fun. In fact, it’s a fairly enjoyable high-school production of Shakespeare’s original, albeit with words like ‘cell phone’, ‘Gotham’ and ‘Selina Kyle’ replacing words in the original meter. This does occasionally jar. Instead of being lost in the ‘wood’, the protagonists are lost in the ‘hood’. No, really. Also, for reasons that don’t quite gel with the original play, Batman and Robin hang around Gotham Junkyard and mess with these kids, because Shakespeare. And Batman.

Nevertheless, the cast are all very likeable. Talent and volume does vary, but their enthusiasm is universal. Among the most noteworthy performances were those of Echo Patriquin and Scott Martin. Patriquin’s passionate portrayal of Helena is worthy of an actress twice her age, whilst Scott Martin’s natural comedic talent bubbles through delightfully in his portrayal of Frances Flute & Thisby. The stage design is quite impressive too, although for a stage as large as the Churchill Theatre’s, some of the cast still manage to be obscured somehow. By Batman.

There’s not much more to say. It’s not a bad way of tricking a comic-book fan into seeing some Shakespeare, and it’s not a bad production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. With Batman. Indeed, for some, that might be enough.

Reviews by James Beagon

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Performances

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The Blurb

A Midsummer Night’s Dream in Gotham takes a Shakespeare favourite and gives it an urban vibe. Fairyland becomes Gotham with Oberon and Theseus as Batman and Bruce Wayne, Puck as Robin, of course, and Titania and Hippolyta as Catwoman and Selina Kyle. Come see this old favourite with a new twist. Beautiful Shakespearean language combines with comic characters to take the audience on a fun and fanciful journey. 'Lord, what fools these mortals be' (Puck).

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